Religious Education/PSHCE

Religious Education/PSHCE


Religious education (RE) and personal, social, health and citizenship education (PSHCE) are statutory, but non-examined, subjects that are taught together at City Academy Norwich.

PSHCE helps to give students the knowledge, skills and understanding they need to lead confident, healthy and independent lives. It aims to help them understand how they are developing personally and socially, tackling many of the moral, social and cultural issues that are part of growing up. It is here that pupils will learn about bullying, citizenship, drug education, healthy eating, physical activity, mental and emotional health, wellbeing, and sex and relationships. Our programme of study also aims to develop skills and attributes such as resilience, self-esteem, risk-management, team working and critical thinking.

In RE pupils are encouraged to learn from different religions, beliefs, values and traditions, while exploring their own beliefs and questions of meaning. We focus on challenging pupils to reflect on, consider, analyse, interpret and evaluate issues of truth, belief, faith and ethics, and to communicate their responses. RE enables pupils to develop respect for and sensitivity to others, in particular those whose faith and beliefs are different from their own, which promotes discernment and enables pupils to combat prejudice.


All pupils undertake one lesson per week of RE/PSHCE.


During these lessons we ask some big questions such as, does God exist? How should a country be run? What makes a hero? We then go on to study real life examples including Mandela and Ghandi. We also complete studies of the world’s main religions including Christianity, Sikhism, Islam and Buddhism and what the word β€˜sacred’ means to different people.


All pupils undertake one lesson per week of compulsory RE/PSHCE.

At KS4 we spend more time on PSHCE topics including: fairness and equality, drugs education, crime and punishment, matters of life, sex and relationships, emotional and health wellbeing, identity and expression, the role of women, elections and voting, and the debate between science and religion. We also explore RE topics such as the sanctity of life and the religions of Islam and Hinduism.

Religious Education itself is also offered as a GCSE option subject. Pupils study two main religions, Christianity and Buddhism, and also themes in RE such as relationships and families; religion and life; religion, peace and conflict; and religion, crime and punishment. Students are assessed in two final examinations of 1 hour and 45 minutes each, at the end of year 11.


Getting students to take an active interest in the themes that are taught in RE/PSHCE helps them understand the world they live in locally, nationally and globally. It also develops empathy with the issues people face. Encouraging students to participate in local community activities such as volunteering work can really help them become engaged and valued citizens of the world.


RE/PSHCE are totally different subjects from any other in the curriculum. They can prepare students for any job that involves working with people. RE in particular is becoming more popular as the need for religious tolerance and understanding in our society grows.

Many pupils who opt to take RE at GCSE go on to careers in teaching, counselling, social work, the Armed Forces, the Prison Service, medicine and health, and the Civil Service. Indeed, there is no job or career that RE and PSHCE in general is not relevant to.