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RSE

In Coláiste Mhuire, we believe that a comprehensive programme of Relationships and Sex Education (RSE) plays a crucial role in promoting individuals' physical and emotional well-being by providing essential information about sexual health, consent, and relationships.

 

Below is a short summary of the content covered in RSE in each year of the curriculum.

 

1st Year:

Relationships and Sexuality Education (RSE) is an integral part of, and connects with, aspects of SPHE. It is of particular importance for young people at this stage of their lives as they reflect on questions such as ‘What kind of person am I?’ and ‘What matters for me in relationships?’ As they continue to form their identity, they are making sense of life experiences, information, images, and messages about relationships and sexuality from a range of informal sources such as their peers, family, the media, online world. Having the opportunity to think about and discuss relationships, sexuality, and healthy sexual expression within a safe classroom setting and with a skilled teacher is vitally important.


 

2nd Year:

Relationships and Sexuality Education (RSE) is an integral part of, and connects with, aspects of SPHE. It is of particular importance for young people at this stage of their lives. As they continue to form their identity, they are making sense of life experiences, information, images, and messages about relationships and sexuality from a range of informal sources such as their peers, family, the media, online world. Some of the topics covered include family ties, gender identity and sexual orientation, forming relationships, managing relationships, healthy relationships, and from conception to birth.


 

3rd Year:

Relationships and Sexuality Education (RSE) is an integral part of, and connects with, aspects of SPHE. It is of particular importance for young people at this stage of their lives. As they continue to form their identity, they are making sense of life experiences, information, images, and messages about relationships and sexuality from a range of informal sources such as their peers, family, the media, online world. Some of the topics covered include body image, respect in relationships, consent, setting boundaries in relationships, sexual health, relationship problems, and responsibilities of pregnancy and parenting.


Transition Year: 

 

Let’s Get Real Programme 

This programme was developed by Dublin Rape Crisis Centre in response to the increase in pornography use with young people and the impact of the overuse of pornography. Research shows that, unfortunately, pornography is the most prominent means of sex education for young people today and is embedded in the world we live in.

In this programme, young people are learning attitudes and behaviours in relationships from the world of pornography where problematic messages about gender, power, pleasure, body image, consent, sexuality, sexual identity, and sex are portrayed. 


 

5th Year:

 

The Relationship and Sexual Education Module spans six/seven weeks, with each session lasting one hour. In the first week, participants delve into the multifaceted domain of human sexuality and sexual orientation. This involves understanding the diversity of sexual identities, exploring the biological, psychological, and social factors shaping sexuality, and debunking prevalent myths and stereotypes. Week two is dedicated to contraception and protection, where participants learn about various methods of contraception, their efficacy rates, and how to access them. Discussions also address the importance of protection against both unwanted pregnancies and sexually transmitted infections (STIs), emphasizing responsible sexual behavior. Moving on to the third week, the focus shifts to STIs, including their symptoms, modes of transmission, prevention strategies, and the significance of regular testing and treatment. In week four, the spotlight is on decision-making skills pertinent to sexual health. This involves navigating complex factors such as peer pressure, personal values, and setting boundaries to make informed and autonomous choices in relationships and sexual encounters. Week five explores the concept of consent, emphasizing its fundamental role in healthy relationships and providing practical communication techniques for negotiating boundaries and affirming consent. Finally, in weeks six or/and seven, participants critically examine the impact of pornography on individuals and relationships, addressing issues such as addiction, unrealistic expectations, and potential harm. The module integrates interactive activities, group discussions, and guest speakers to enhance learning and create a supportive environment where inclusivity and respect for diverse perspectives are prioritized.


 

6th Year:

 

The Relationship and Sexual Education Module spans six to seven weeks, with each session lasting one hour, tailored specifically for Irish teenagers. In the first week, the focus is on understanding the prevalence and effects of drug and substance abuse among teenagers in Ireland, with discussions on prevention and seeking help for addiction. Week two delves into the crucial concept of consent, exploring its legal implications and emphasizing affirmative consent in all sexual interactions. The third week addresses the risks of sexting and online safety, including insights into the COCO Law (Communications (Retention of Data) Act 2011). Participants also learn about the influence of pornography and potential addiction in week four, with resources provided for those needing support. Week five centers on contraception and protection, educating on methods, and dispelling misconceptions. The final week covers safe sex practices, STDs, and STIs, providing information on identification, prevention, testing, treatment, and accessing healthcare services. Throughout, interactive activities and discussions facilitate learning while promoting inclusivity and respect for diverse perspectives.

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