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Personal Development Programme


Personal Development at Hertswood Academy is built upon our five key values of Courtesy, Aspiration, Integrity, Resilience and Respect, using as role models:  JK Rowling, Henry Fraser, Stephen Hawking and  Maggie Aderin Pocock. These underpin our culture and every student's daily school life.

Through learning on the Personal Development Programme at Hertswood we want students to be able to:

  • Leave school as a caring, confident and responsible adult
  • Fulfil their full potential in a changing, diverse and demanding world
  • Engage in healthy relationships
  • Embrace challenges with resilience

At Hertswood, the Personal Development Programme (PD) is carefully mapped and covered through a spiral curriculum. This curriculum is delivered through a half hour daily session with their tutor as well as areas of the subject curriculum. This learning is further developed through Assemblies, Whole School or Year Group ‘drop-down’ days and The House System. The students’ progress and learning are assessed and monitored on a regular basis.

At Key Stages 3, 5 and 5 The Personal Development Programme meets the requirements of the National Curriculum to address:

PSHE (Personal Social and Health Education) –

  • Health and Wellbeing (Self-concept, Healthy Lifestyles, drugs, Alcohol and Tobacco, Managing Risk and personal safety, Puberty, Sexual health and fertility)
  • Relationships (Positive relationships, Relationship values, Forming and maintaining Respectful Relationships, Contraception and Parenthood, Social influences)
  • Living in the Wider World (Learning Skills, Choices and pathways, Employment rights and responsibilities, Financial Choices, Media Literacy and digital Resilience)
  • (including RSE- Relationships and Sex Education)

Citizenship (Rights, Responsibilities and Relationships, Identity and Diversity, Personal Safety, the Law, Democracy and Justice, Politics and Fundamental British Values, local community membership, national community membership, global community membership.)

  • CEIAG​  (Elements of academic and career progression are studied in all years (relevant to their age).
  • SMSC (including British Values) - this is Spiritual, Moral, Social and Cultural provision.

All faculty areas also address elements of SMSC through their individual curricula, and extra-curricular activities provide further opportunity for the development of this area.

As well as the study of these topics, students may develop their personal talents, skills and interests through a range of other opportunities. Some of these include:

  • Student Voice - application to be a student prefect on the School Council or seven Student Forums.
  • House Membership- every student is a member of a house and may participate in a wide range of competitive and charitable activities to develop their interests, skills and sense of collective responsibility.
  • School Representation- Hertswood students compete in a range of sporting and arts and science competitions. Students can hold the office of House Prefect, Student Council Chair and Secretary, Charity Captain, Senior Team (Head Girl etc) or House Captain. Students can assist the school at formal and informal events such as Primary liaison events, Open Evening, Care Home concerts and interviews.
  • Extra-Curricular Activities, Clubs and Teams.



Years 7-11

Years 7-11 PDP Overview

Year 12 & 13

Year 12 & 13 PDP Overview


Please note: these plans are subject to slight changes to allow us to respond to immediate needs or concerns that might arise (for example an explanation of Coronavirus before Lockdown, or learning about good mental health strategies in the wake of a tragic local event).

The Parental Right to Withdraw from RSE (Relationships and Sex Education)

Please see the government guidance (link below) on the parents’ right to withdraw a child under the age of 16 from certain lessons on sex education. Please note that there is no right to withdraw for the relationships elements of this work.

RSE Guide for Parents- SecondaryIf you would like to withdraw your child from any of the sessions outlined in this overview, please contact the school office and we will arrange for a member of the appropriate team to call you and discuss your reasons and your wishes.