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SMSC stands for spiritual, moral, social and cultural education. All schools in England must show how well pupils do in this area. In our school our intent is to weave SMSC into all aspects of our curriculum, giving children the chance to question the world around them and develop an understanding of how to be a positive member of society. This involves the daily development and focus on PSHE (Personal, Social, Health & Economic) and RSE (Relationships and Sex) education across our school.

Below is an outline of what each aspect stands for.

Spiritual - Explore beliefs and experience; respect values; discover oneself and the surrounding world, use imagination and creativity.

Moral - Recognise right and wrong; understand consequences; investigate moral and ethical issues; offer reasoned views.

Social - Use social skills in different contexts; work well with others; resolve conflicts; understand communities work.

Cultural - Appreciate cultural influences; participate in culture opportunities; understand, accept, respect and celebrate diversity.

To explore our SMSC curriculum approach in detail click the headings below to find out more and also read about our whole school enquiry by clicking the Enquiry link on this page.

What is PATH’s?

Our school was involved in an exciting project about the Promoting Alternative Thinking Strategies (PATHS) curriculum, called ‘PATHS To Success’. PATHS is a programme for all children that helps them to manage their behaviour, understand their emotions and work well with others. The programme was run by Manchester University and the initial project was funded by the National Institute for Health Research. To find out more click here.

We now use PATHS across all our classes and the children learn to reflect on their emotions through the sessions which happen weekly. You can download a copy of the PATH's curriculum overview from the scheme of work area of this page. Each years programme follows a generally similar pattern and theme, but extends and advances the concepts by building on prior knowledge from the previous year.

A core part of the programme is the "Pupil of the Day" where each day a pupil is picked at random to be the pupil of the day. In this role they receive compliments from their class mates, wear a special lanyard designed by the class and undertake some jobs that the class decided at the start of the year should be for the pupil of the day. At the end of the day they take home a copy of the compliments they have been given.

Each classroom also has a "Pupil of the Day" display and ensures that a feelings board is displayed for reference to from the children.

How are British Values made part of the curriculum offer?

In November 2014 the government issued an advice document to schools about “Promoting fundamental British values” through the school SMSC curriculum. As a school we have been working on ensuring that this aspect of SMSC is weaved throughout our curriculum and is reflected in our pupils. The aim of this page is to give you some examples of how we are promoting British Values, so you can understand what it looks like within our school. If you look through our Twitter feed or join us on Pinterest, you can see further examples of SMSC within our school.

Below there is an outline of what the fundamental British values are and examples of how it is promoted through our SMSC curriculum.


Children within our school are taught about how citizens can influence decision making through the democratic process. In May 2015 we held our own Unsworth Election to run alongside the general election. The children were able to experience what an election is all about and understand
their role within it.

We have a school council which meets regularly to discuss issues raised in class council meetings. The council has its own news section and is able to genuinely influence change within the school. Council members for each year group are voted for by their class. Click here to find out more about them.

Our school governors have their own area of the website. 

Mutual Respect

Children are taught about the importance of distinguishing right from wrong. In all their daily interactions and throughout every lesson, respect for the individual is reinforced and modelled by all staff. Across all year groups children experience a range of visits and hear from a range of different
speakers, in order for them to develop a respect for their global community.

• Year 1 support a charity to develop their learning about “thinking of others”, such as creating porch boxes for the homeless.
• Year 2 visit the Jewish Museum, which is a preserved Synagogue and are given a tour by one of the volunteers to learn about beliefs and practices.
• Year 1 visit St George’s church to learn about baptism.

Through visits and visitors, our children develop an understanding of the world around them and experience this first hand.

Individual Liberty

Children learn that as an individual they are free to express themselves through art, dance, drama, music, sport etc. Within school, pupils are actively encouraged to make choices, knowing that they are in a safe and supportive environment. As a school we educate and provide boundaries for young pupils to make choices safely, through provision of a safe environment and empowering education. Pupils are encouraged to know, understand and exercise their rights and personal freedoms and advised how to exercise these safely, for example through our E-Safety and PSHE
lessons. Whether it be through choice of learning challenge, of how they record, of participation in our numerous extra-curricular clubs and opportunities, pupils are given the freedom to make choices.
• Our e-safety curriculum is celebrated during SID days.
• Through Sports Day children learn to be part of a team, celebrate the achievements of others and understand what it means to play fairly.

The Rule of Law

Children learn to appreciate that by living under the law, all individuals are protected and that the law is essential to keep the country running smoothly. Through assemblies and within all classrooms, children are taught about rules and how these create fairness for all. Visits from authorities such as the Police and Fire Service help reinforce this message.

As a school we follow our “Golden Rules”, which underpin our school motto of “Together We Build Understanding”. Each classroom has its own rule and behaviour display, which sets out the class charter and the systems that are in place for rewards and sanctions. Visit our Policies page to download a copy of our school behaviour policy or our behaviour booklet.


Children are taught to appreciate the fact that we are all different and unique individuals. Children within our school understand that everyone has a voice and is entitled to share their opinions, ideas and beliefs. Our children are taught to recognise discrimination and understand the importance of their role in stopping it.

Our whole school enquiry about Christmas through the arts developed a sense of spirituality.

Through our Remembrance Garden, the children thought about World War One and the sacrifice made by so many. They created their own poppies and placed them in the garden.

What is RSE?

In our school, we understand that pupils must be provided with an education that prepares them for the opportunities, responsibilities and experiences of adult life. A key part of this relates to relationships and health education, which must be delivered to every primary-aged pupil. Primary schools also have the option to decide whether pupils are taught sex education. At Unsworth we cover the statutory elements of this through our Science curriculum and during Upper KS2 usually Year 5, the school nurse or another appropriate professional visits to undertake a puberty talk. Parents are notified when this is planned to take place and parents may withdraw their child from this talk.

We held a Parent Consultation in July 2021 to allow parents an opportunity to view the RSE policy and SCARF overview of learning. A virtual zoom session was held on 7th July to provide parents with an opportunity to ask questions or find out more. A copy of the letter can be downloaded from this page.

Relationships education focusses on giving pupils the knowledge they need to make informed decisions about their wellbeing, health and relationships, and to build their self-efficacy. It is a compulsory part of the curriculum that pupils cannot be withdrawn from.  Health education focusses on equipping pupils with the knowledge they need to make good decisions about their own health and wellbeing.

We understand our responsibility to deliver a high-quality, age-appropriate and evidence-based
relationships, sex and health curriculum for all our pupils. The relationships, sex and health curriculum is delivered as part of our PSHE Curriculum using the SCARF scheme and within our approach to the development of SMSC. A copy of the RSE elements of the Scarf curriculum can be downloaded in the downloads area of this page. Through effective organisation and delivery of the subject, we will ensure that:

  • Knowledge is sectioned into units of manageable size and delivered in a carefully sequenced way, within  the planned SCARF scheme of work.
  • Content is communicated to pupils clearly and teaching includes sufficient and well-chosen opportunities and contexts for pupils to embed new knowledge so that it can be used confidently in real-life situations.
  • The curriculum is delivered proactively, such that it addresses issues in a timely way in line with current evidence on children’s physical, emotional and sexual development.
  • Teaching of the curriculum reflects requirements set out in law, particularly the Equality Act 2010, so that pupils understand what the law does and does not allow, and the wider legal implications of the decisions they make.
  • The school ensures that all teaching and materials are appropriate for the ages of the pupils, their religious backgrounds, their developmental stages and any additional needs, such as SEND.
  • Teaching about families requires sensitive and well-judged teaching based on knowledge of pupils and their circumstances. Families of many forms provide a nurturing environment for children. (Families can include for example, single parent families, LGBT parents, families headed by grandparents, adoptive parents, foster parents/carers amongst other structures.)
  • Care needs to be taken to ensure that there is no stigmatisation of children based on their home circumstances and needs, to reflect sensitively that some children may have a different structure of support around them; e.g. looked after children or young carers.
  • Teachers ensure that lesson plans are centred around reducing stigma, particularly in relation to mental wellbeing, and encouraging openness through discussion activities and group work.
  • Teachers will ensure lesson plans focus on challenging perceived views of pupils based on protected characteristics, through exploration of, and developing mutual respect for, those different to themselves.
  • Any resources or materials used to support learning will be formally assessed by the SLT before use to ensure they are appropriate for the age and maturity of pupils, and sensitive to their needs. This is also why the SCARF scheme of learning has been purchased for use across school.

The latest statutory government guidance on RSE in schools that has shaped our approach can be downloaded by clicking here.

What is the Rainbow Flag Award?

In the Summer term 2017 Unsworth was one of 200 schools across the country who applied to work towards achieving “The Rainbow Flag Award.” After initial training and reflection, we were one of the 100 schools who were selected to be taken forward to receive training and support. As a school we have been developing our LGBT work over the last few years through accessing materials from Stonewall and The Proud Trust. We achieved the award in 2018.

The Rainbow Flag Award is a quality assurance framework for schools, primary and secondary. Through a process of self-assessment and ongoing monitoring and feedback, schools will determine how well they are providing safe and supportive environments for lesbian, gay, bisexual and trans
(LGBT) students, taking a whole school approach. In the Summer term 2017 Unsworth was one of 200 schools across the country who applied to work towards achieving “The Rainbow Flag Award.” After initial training and reflection, we were one of the 100 schools who were selected to be
taken forward to receive training and support. As a school we have been developing our LGBT work over the last few years through accessing materials from Stonewall and The Proud Trust. A Frequently Asked Questions document can be downloaded on this page.

The award will focus on six key areas:

• Red - Skilled Teachers
• Orange - Supportive Governors and Parents
• Yellow - Effective Policies
• Green - Inclusive Curriculum
• Blue - Pastoral Support
• Violet - Pupil Voice

As a staff we have been working together to create resources and develop our approach during our two autumn PAD’s. We have been supported by the Proud Trust, who have helped us to think about different ways we can make LGBT awareness a part of our daily practice. Through our work,
we aim to ensure that our children have the right language and feel confident to talk to each other, staff and their families. Our school motto of “Together We Build Understanding” is always at the heart of all we do and we feel passionately

How are links with the community being developed?

Our School Community

We are a friendly school, we like to collaborate with each other.  The older children often act as ‘buddies’ for the younger children helping them to settle in to school life.  Parents and carers make friends with each other when they come to collect children at the end of the school day.

Our Parent-Teacher Association and Governors are very busy and include mums, dads, grandparents and other local people who care about our school.  We are a very generous community, regularly raising money for local and national charities.

Our Local Community

Our school is at the centre of our community.  Many local businesses and people give us their support and are always generous when we fundraise for school equipment.  People in the community, including local fire crew and police officers visit us and tell us about what they do.

We also visit people outside and take part in community activities such as singing at local shops and care homes or inter-school sporting events with our local high school.