Minerva Learning Trust



What will my child learn in this subject?

Our Ethos 

Ecclesfield School values the Spiritual, Moral, Social and Cultural development of our students. Not only do all students, across all year groups, have a timetabled lesson once a fortnight, but each week a form time session is dedicated to a SMSC topic. Where possible these topics are explored in assembly and questions related to them are included in the form weekly quiz. SMSC lessons are cognitively and emotionally challenging.

For students in Years 7 – 10 the year is divided into five themes: Health, Religious Education, Worldviews, Critical Thinking and Relationship and Sex and Education.

  • In the Health theme we look at how we can maintain a healthy lifestyle as well as how to take care of our mental health
  • In the Religious Education theme our students look at different religious views of how the world was created as well as debating the concept of evil. In Years 7 and 8 we explore Judaism and Christianity. In Years 9 and 10 students look at Islam.
  • The Worldviews theme sees our students looking at different perspectives of the world. We explore how where you live affects your life and life chances. We also look at ways in which British life is affected by different influences and movements and delve into what it means to be British. In these lessons our students deepen their knowledge and understanding of Fundamental British Values. Students also gain a greater understanding of diversity and consider the prejudice some minority groups have suffered historically and continue to do so.
  • In Critical Thinking our students are encouraged to consider the world in which they live to form judgements and to keep themselves safe. Many of the lessons address how to keep safe, including online, and how to assess risk and dangers.
  • Our Relationships and Sex Education lessons are designed to make our students understand the emotional aspects of sexual relationships. We also look at the law, health care and how to assess whether a relationship is loving or coercive. We aim to empower our students to make informed and safe decisions throughout their lifetimes. Students know fully what the law is regarding sex and what is meant by consent. Students also know how to access help.

The Year 11 curriculum is slightly different. In Year 11 students focus on four themes: Health, Relationship and Sex Education, Footprint on the World and Critical Thinking. The Footprint on the World theme looks at what our individual contributions can be and the legacy we leave on the world.

As teachers of SMSC, we have a responsibility to ensure that our learners are confident, healthy, independent and responsible members of society. We will challenge and inspire learners, developing an awareness of modern world issues through an intellectually challenging and personally enriching curriculum. Learners will be encouraged to reflect upon how they are developing socially and morally. Our learners will be provided with opportunities to learn about rights and responsibilities in the modern world and what it is to be British. Across their SMSC journey they will develop as outward facing and confident global citizens.

 Our Aims

We aim to make our lessons thought-provoking and we often discuss controversial issues. Our students are expected to think and contribute to discussions in order to develop their oracy and debating skills. We wish to prepare our students for the complex and interconnected world they must navigate upon leaving school.

The curriculum will allow students to explore how to keep themselves safe, identify risks to themselves and others, strategies to cope with challenges and to question what is right and wrong in our society. They will explore what it is to be British and develop their understanding of the wider spiritual world. They will gain a wider understanding of other cultures and religions and the ethical concepts which underpin these.


  • Students will be highly skilled speakers who can empathise, analyse and evaluate with confidence.
  • Students will be able to understand, infer and analyse what they read.
  • Students will be able to construct an effective argument both verbally and in the written form.
  • Students will be able to work independently and collectively. 


  • Students will be able to identify signs of risk and understand where to access support.
  • Students will be able to construct an informed and balanced argument.
  • Students will understand key concepts of other religions and how these form part of the world in which they live.
  • Students will have greater understanding of the law and know about the protections we have.