Edge is our RSE programme.  This incorporates PSHE and SMSC.  Personal, Social, Health, Careers, Economic education and Spiritual, Moral, Cultural, mental and physical development. Diversity, Democracy and justice both at school and within wider society.

Why is RSE so important? Simply put it matters.  In successive polls of young people that have participated in PSHCE activities students speak about the importance of this in promoting all aspects mentioned above.  They felt that high quality, evidence based and age appropriate teaching of this curriculum enabled them to prepare for the opportunities, responsibilities and experiences of later life.

There is clear research evidence which confirms that students who are emotionally healthy do better at school. RSE/SMSC education helps children and young people to achieve their potential by supporting their wellbeing and tackling issues that can affect their ability to learn, such as anxiety and unhealthy relationships. RSE education also helps pupils to develop skills and aptitudes – like teamwork, communication, and resilience – that are crucial to navigating the challenges and opportunities of the modern world and are increasingly valued by employers.  The national curriculum states that all schools must make provision for a balanced and broadly based curriculum which develops personal behaviour, welfare and safeguarding.

The need for this curriculum was further promoted when the Relationships Education, Relationships and Sex Education and Health Education (England) Regulations 2019, made under sections 34 and 35 of the Children and Social Work Act 2017, make Relationships Education compulsory for all pupils receiving secondary education.

At Fortis Academy we strive to develop our students – Character, Resilience and Aspiration.  Therefore, Careers guidance is also a crucial aspect of our RSE/SMSC/PSHCE Edge programme. We have a dedicated team of professionals with experience of work related learning, one to one guidance, and partnerships with a wide range of employers, colleges and universities.  The ‘Next Steps’ team work alongside the Directors of Year, Form tutors and curriculum leaders to ensure that our students are given every opportunity to develop the necessary skills to grow and fulfil their aspirations.

Our belief in a strong pastoral system also drives our Edge programme everyday all students spend time with their ‘Edge’ Tutor.  This is someone with whom they can build a relationship of trust and support.  During this 20 minute registration period students also have a key focus for the day as follows;

Once a week each year group has an assembly with their Director and Head of Year and Pastoral manager, in these assemblies they can celebrate the many weekly achievements of the students and work towards the shared goal of excellence for all.

Motivational Monday – This can include inspirational videos’, sharing of students own inspirations, or be focused on a key message from the Director of Year.

Tracker Tuesday – Good attendance is vital to success.  On a weekly basis all Edge tutors will discuss attendance and any barriers to attendance with their tutees as a whole class and on an individual basis to ensure that everything is being done to support regular attendance.

Wisdom Wednesday – Enables students to focus on developing their independent learning skills.  Learning how to learn effectively enables them to progress more effectively, this links to our wider Learning to learn programme.

Thinking Thursday – Thinking about others and thinking about ourselves and how we can be the best version of ourselves.

Future’s Friday – This takes an appropriate for each year group for example Year 12 maybe looking at university applications whilst Year 7 are thinking about potential careers and year 9 re exploring their option choice.

All students (except year 11 – this academic year only). Have an additional lesson of EE – Edge and Enrichment. At Fortis Academy our goal is to enrich the lives of our students. At KS3 this programme includes all of the statuary content as well as a wide range of different enrichment activities, such as the Duke of Edinburgh Bronze award for our Year 9 students or community projects for our year 7 students.  Students are also able to access additional qualification such as working towards an ‘Arts’ award or learning British sign language. (you can view a detailed breakdown of the curriculum for KS3 and KS4/5 in the folders on this page). At KS4/5 some of the highlights are careers days, mock interviews with employers, workshops with external professionals and trips and visits.

For further information on aspects of our Edge programme and resources please use the links below.


Government Publication on Relationships Education

Relationships Education – Relationships and Sex Education RSE and Health Education.pdf




Citizenship encompasses the key aspects of British Values:
• Rights & responsibilities
• Diversity
• Democracy
• Justice
Students are able to Explore, Engage, Enquire and Excel. They develop critical thinking skills, and oracy skills. Students are able to aspire to positions of responsibility to which their peers will elect them. Students learn to be selfless and valued proactive members of a wider community both the Campus community and their local communities.

Within the RSE curriculum there are several opportunities to explore a healthy lifestyle including diet and exercise and avoiding harmful habits such as smoking or gambling. Healthy Eating makes a positive contribution to SMSC. Physical activity is promoted and emotional Health and well-being are a priority. This study helps to develop healthy behaviour, promote social inclusion, reduce health inequalities and improve outcomes.
High quality careers education is vial to enable students to grow and fulfil their aspirations, it is a key aspect of our Edge programme. Through the highly qualified team students are offered a range of experiences to promote their ‘Next Steps’ across all year groups. Please visit our dedicated Careers page for more information – https://fortisacademy.org.uk/careers/

English makes a major contribution to pupils’ RSE/SMSC development through:
• Developing confidence and expertise in language, which is an important aspect of individual & social identity.
• Enabling pupils to understand and engage with the feelings and values embodied in high quality poetry, fiction, drama, film and television.
• Developing pupils’ awareness of moral and social issues in fiction, journalism, magazines, radio, television and film.
• Helping pupils to understand how language changes over time, the influences on spoken and written language and social attitudes to the use of language.
• Supporting whole campus policy on issues such as discipline and behaviour
• Enabling pupils to acknowledge the important contribution made to mathematics by non-western cultures.
• Encouraging pupils to reflect on the wonder of the natural world
• Awareness of the ways that science and technology can affect society and the environment.
• Showing respect for differing opinions on creation or cloning for example.
• Co-operation in practical activity
• Raising awareness that scientific developments are the product of many cultures.
• Giving students a chance to reflect on nature, their environment and surroundings
• Studying artists with spiritual or religious themes and also looking at issues raised by artists which concern ethical issues i.e. War and violence
Computer Studies
• Making clear the guidelines about the ethical use of the internet and other media devices.
• Acknowledging advances in technology and appreciation for human achievement.
• Promoting creative expression.
• Exploring issues such as positive body image and peer pressure.
• Promoting exercise to aid mental wellbeing.
• Showing respect for differing opinions on different ‘real life’ situations approached through safe distancing of ‘Role’.
• Co-operation in practical activity
• Celebrating the any inspirational theatre practitioners, playwrights, directors and actors that have changed perceptions and promoted tolerance and respect of others.
• Opportunities for reflection on the creation, earth’s origin and future.
• Reflection and discussion on the fair distribution of the earth’s resources
• Studies of people and places giving pupils the chance to reflect on the social and cultural characteristics of society.
• Looking at the establishment of multi-cultural Britain
• Enabling pupils to reflect on issues such as imperialism and communism
• Showing an awareness of the moral implications of the actions of historical figures
• Students may gain insights into the way of life cultural traditions and moral and social developments of other people.
• Social skills are developed through group activities and communication exercises.
• Listening skills are improved through oral work.
• Teaching that encourages students to be open to the music of other cultures.
• Considering the role of music in society and to see how music can cause conflict and differences of opinion.
• Looking at the way music can change moods and behaviour.
Physical Education
• Activities involving co-operation, competition, rules, self-discipline & fair-play
• Exploring the sports and traditions of a variety of cultures
• Individual activities that provide the opportunity for self-reflection, awareness and challenge.
• Learning about beliefs, values and the concept of spirituality.
• Reflect on the significance of religious teaching in their own lives.
• Develop respect for the right of others to hold beliefs different from their own
Social Science
• social influence / attachment
• Self-concept
• Identity and gender identities
• Ethics in research
• Norms and societal values
• Crime and deviance
• Explanation of societal atrocities
• Socialisation
• Families in multi-cultural Britain
• Care values / equal opportunities
• Reflecting on ingenious products/inventions, the diversity of material and ways in which design technology can improve the quality of life.
• How different cultures have contributed to technology.
• Opportunities to work as a team, recognising strengths and sharing equipment/ideas