Course 42 (PSHE)

Welcome to the subject page for Course 42 (PSHE).

You’ll find key information including staffing, curriculum plans and contact details on this page.

Curriculum Intent

What is Course 42?

According to the Hitchhikers’ Guide to the Galaxy by Douglas Adams, the number 42 is the “Ultimate answer to Life, the Universe and Everything” so this seemed to be a very appropriate name for a course that aims to equip students with ways of dealing with the demands, pressures and opportunities they will face during their time in education and their future roles in the 21st century world. This will include issues related to health, careers, life skills, internet safety, citizenship and society and personal skills.

Course 42 also includes RSE – Relationship and Sex Education which is delivered in Key Stages 3 and 4, closely following the advice of the PSHE association.  This enables the College to follow the recent change in government policy where the teaching of RSE is a requirement, and will be statutory, in all schools by 2019.  The amendments will continue to allow parents a right to withdraw children from sex education. Relationship and sex education is designed to ensure pupils are taught the knowledge and life skills they will need to stay safe and develop healthy and supportive relationships, particularly dealing with the challenges of growing up in an online world.

In Years 7 to 9 students have a lesson of C42 per week which is taught by our specialist teachers.  Our PSHE content is then taught though our CPS programme in year 10 and 11.  In addition we also teach some topics including careers and sex education in a series of drop down days in KS4.


The Course 42 course is designed specifically to meet the needs of our students and our aim is to deliver a bespoke curriculum which gives students both the knowledge and skills to be able to make their own decisions now and in the future.  Our curriculum covers all aspects of Personal, Social, Health and Economic education and fulfils the statutory RSE curriculum through key stage 3.  We focus on 3 main themes- Living in the wider world which focusses on citizenship and careers, Relationships which examines different types of relationships that young people develop and Health and Wellbeing which considers both physical and mental health of our young people.

Our curriculum aims to develop skills such as honesty, compassion, empathy and self-management in order that students can take responsibility for making their own decisions.  These skills will enable students to develop the resilience they require to be successful now and in the future in an increasingly complex, interconnected and technological world.   Students are encouraged to share their viewpoints and reflect on the viewpoints of others through open discussions. There is a strong emphasis on development of social and communication skills which they will use throughout their lives.  They are encouraged to reflect on their behaviour and morals and discuss challenging scenarios to discover the impact of decisions that they might choose to make, on themselves and others.

As a Rights Respecting School the UNCRC is fully embedded throughout our curriculum. This helps build students’ confidence to make informed decisions. They have a moral framework, based on equality and respect for all that lasts a lifetime, as they grow into engaged, responsible members of society.

Our Course 42 curriculum revisits and builds on knowledge and skills throughout KS3 which are then developed further through our CPS curriculum at KS4, developing a spiralling curriculum.

We are keen to encourage students to let us know what they think and feel should be adapted and changed in our curriculum.  We keep up to date with information and guidance which helps us to ensure the information that we are presenting is current, appropriate and valued by our students.

Schemes of Learning


At CVCC we value the opportunities that are offered which enable the students to develop into responsible citizens.  Through our C42 programme (KS3) and CPS (KS4) we offer a range of opportunities through our Deep Learning Days to enable the students go gain valuable skills and experiences that they may not received through the taught curriculum. This includes- enterprise and team building activities, visits from local employers, drug and alcohol awareness talks and interviews skills. 


Mental Health and Wellbeing activities.

We are keen to promote positive mental health for the whole school community at CVCC.  We run a wellbeing ambassador scheme where students regularly meet to talk about and promote positive mental health.  This is run at lunchtimes and gives students the opportunity to spread positive messages about mental health and wellbeing across the school. 


Opportunities are also provided by groups such as the College’s Amnesty International group and the Youth Cultural Champions