Personal Development Curriculum

At Sir Jonathan North we provide opportunities for students to achieve their potential holistically and academically.  Our Personal Development curriculum and extra-curricular activities offer exceptional opportunities, which extend beyond the academic, technical or vocational. This reflects our intent to create good people. Our assembly programme celebrates both national and international events as well marking cultural and religious observations. We aim to prepare our students for life in modern Britain, as well as giving them an appreciation of the differences as well as commonalities across cultural, religious, ethnic and socio-economic communities. Recently we have secured an Eco Schools Green Flag award in recognition of the impact of the work done by the Eco Club. We have a careers action plan mapped against the Gatsby benchmarks and Work Experience is organised for all Year 10 students, (year on year we have had near 100% participation rate for the week). We are proud to work in partnership with many external bodies so students can participate in national programmes such as Young Enterprise; Youth Parliament elections, debate competitions, MFL Spelling Bees and Duke of Edinburgh Bronze and Silver Awards.

Our PDC offer is a response to the needs of our cohort and part of our intent to produce responsible, confident and tolerant young people, who are equipped to succeed and compete in the communities of the future. We promote the British Values, develop Spiritual, Moral, Social and Cultural (SMSC) principles and maintain the school’s 4 Rs of Resilience, Respect, Resourcefulness and Reflectiveness.

PDC Lessons

Students have one-hour long PDC lesson every week, on a rolling timetable with their form tutors. For PDC lessons, students are provided with a bespoke booklet for each module, roughly every half term. The PDC curriculum is a five-year ambitious and sequential curriculum. It is an age appropriate curriculum based around three core themes:

  • Living in the Wider World – Including Citizenship and Careers
  • Mental and Physical Health and Wellbeing
  • Relationships

We ensure the content follows the new government statutory guidelines on Relationship, Sex and Health Education (RSE) that came into force from September 2020.

Outline of modules and example topics covered throughout the five-year plan (all topics are subject to change as we respond to the needs of our cohort:


  • Living in the Wider World – Including Citizenship and Careers
  • Mental and Physical Health and Wellbeing
  • Relationships


Year 7

Year 8

Year 9

Year 10

Year 11

Autumn term

Half term 1

Establishing friendships

Independent travel skills

Basic First Aid


Risks of energy drinks

Alcohol and smoking

Recreational drugs

Gang Culture

Knife crime

Risks online and offline

Reframe negative thoughts

Emotional health

Media and mental health

Perseverance and procrastination

Managing exam stress

Half term 2

Essential skills

Careers and aspirations

Challenging work stereotypes

Work/life balance

Pay gap stereotypes

Options for Year 9

Demonstrating strengths

Workplace emotions

Options for year 10

Electoral systems

Targeted advertising

Gambling and debt


Post 16 applications

Employability skills

Spring term

Half term 3

Living in a diverse society

Bullying and cyber bullying

Being an upstander

Challenging discrimination

Gender Identity

Protected Characteristics

Types of families

Positive Family Relationships

Conflict resolution

Relationships on and offline


Challenging victim blaming

Handling unwanted attention

Relationships and abuse

Sexual orientation

Half term 4

Healthy diets

Personal hygiene


Daily wellbeing

Developing resilience

Mental health

Work life balance

Healthy eating

Body image

Media and gang culture

Impact of drugs on others

Managing peer pressure

Screening and self-examination

Cosmetic body alterations

Summer term

Half term 5

Types of relationships

Consent: seeking 

Relationship stereotypes

Consent: law



Sexual choices

STDs and safer sex

Sexual risks in Social Media

Managing conflicts

Inclusions in society


Changing family structures


Forced marriage

Half term 6

Citizen, Parliament, Monarch

British Law

Money choices: debt

The political system

The justice system

Human Rights

Employment Law

Financial risks

Legal and illegal finances

Learning at work

Responsibilities at work

Work Experience evaluations


Teaching and learning in PDC lessons replicates the whole school approach; it focuses on embedding positive routines and uses retrieval practice, interleaving and use of concrete examples in lessons in order for students to use the knowledge gained to be able to relate to situations they may come across outside of school.

  • Interleaving – used across the year groups to revisit key components of the three core themes
  • Dual coding – use of graphical organisers and keywords to help understand learning
  • Retrieval Practice – used as starter and plenaries throughout the schemes of work
  • Elaboration – scaffolded questioning to encourage detail and development of extended writing
  • Concrete Examples – used the frequently to model good practice and lead to increased understanding and application of key themes in the wider world
  • Teachers across the school support the school behaviour for learning practices in lessons to help maintain a positive learning environment. As a result, students remain on task and are actively involved during lesson time.