Life skills

At Vandyke, Life Skills is all about students developing self-awareness, exploring the Big Questions in life and creating their own opinions on the world we live in.  The Life Skills course creates active rather than passive learners, empowered with the social and emotional skills to make responsible choices about the direction of their own lives, as well as the ability to co-operate with others to improve the quality of life for all the community.

The course as a whole aims to develop the knowledge, skills and understanding to become informed, active and responsible members of the local, national and global communities. It has been carefully designed to develop students’ thinking from year 9 to year 11.






The subject content is closely linked to current events and issues in the world.  For example, year 11 students question whether war is ever "just". Year 10 students have the opportunity to explore the question,  " Do we ever have the right to end life?", and Year 9 consider what it means to have collective responsibility. 

In both Key Stage 3 and 4, Life Skills lessons consist of:

  1. PSHE, including sex and relationship education;
  2. Citizenship, including politics;
  3. Careers:  see careers page for more information;
  4. RE:  in year 9, students follow a locally agreed syllabus which develops and builds upon prior knowledge obtained at middle schools.  Year 10 and 11 students follow a GCSE short course in Christianity and ethics.  This course includes the views on ethical issues from Christianity and at least two other religions.  Students do not sit a GCSE in RE.

For an overview of the Life Skills curriculum, click here for year 9, here for year 10 and here for year 11.