St Joseph's Rotherhithe



PSHE and SMSC run systematically through our school like a thread through all areas of the curriculum and our Catholic Ethos permeates through all that we do.

 We aim to encourage and support children to have:

  • Their own values and beliefs
  • Their own spiritual awareness
  • Their own high standards of personal behaviour
  • Self-worth and happiness
  • A positive, caring attitude towards other people
  • Confidence, resilience and independence
  • An attitude of cooperation and problem-solving
  • Good mental health and well-being
  • A healthy and active lifestyle
  • An understanding of democratic processes and the rule of law in England
  • An appreciation and acceptance of the diversity and richness of their cultures
  • Opportunities to experience other cultures
  • An ability to celebrate each other’s successes
  • Age appropriate understanding of healthy relationships through appropriate RSE
  • Readiness for their next stage of life


At St Joseph’s Primary School we are guided by our motto which best sums up the ethos of our school:

We grow and learn together in the footsteps of Jesus



How is this achieved at St Joseph’s?


We promote an equality of opportunity and an inclusive environment.

This is implemented through;

Rising Star's Character Education and Life to the Full

and is central to the whole school ethos.


The Character Education planning gives children the opportunity to learn about PSHE and SMSC themes of resilience, citizenship, British Values, cooperation and problem-solving, moral values, confidence, self-worth and happiness. It also ensures clear progression of skills and knowledge across the school.


Life to the Full is taught with a spiral approach to RSE learning in which pupils will revisit the same topics at an age-appropriate stage through their school life, the programme includes teaching about personal health, physical and emotional well-being, strong emotions, private parts of the body, personal relationships, family structures, trusted adults, growing bodies, puberty, periods, life cycles, the dangers of social media, where babies come from, an understanding of the Common Good and living in the wider world. The entire teaching is underpinned with a Christian faith understanding that our deepest identity is as a child of God – created, chosen and loved by God. The programme is fully inclusive of all pupils and their families.


How is the curriculum adapted for the needs of our children?

The borough of Southwark is one of the most deprived in the whole country, therefore we work hard to ensure that all of children do not get left behind. We build into our curriculum opportunities to develop our children’s cultural capital. We do this by ensuring our literature and significant people of influence curriculum offer reflects our diversity – a strong focus on developing children’s knowledge and understanding of our local area and culture, London, Rotherhithe, The Mayflower, The Docks, learning about gang culture and knife crime, etc.


We teach the importance of ‘British Values’

We ensure children become valuable and fully rounded members of society who treat each other with respect and tolerance, regardless of background. Through SMSC provision and the values of Christ, as witnessed through the Gospels, we actively promote and reinforce these ‘British Values’ that have their roots in Christian values and beliefs. At St Joseph’s Primary School we recognise that these values are not uniquely British. The teachings and ideals of Christ, given to us through His Word and His Body, walk hand in hand with these values bringing; Love and Solidarity, Truth and Justice, Purity and Holiness, Dignity and Compassion, and Tolerance and Peace. We teach the importance of ‘British Values’ by going much deeper into the meaning of what it means to live a good life, within a framework of Catholic Christian values.


Focus Weeks throughout the year

As a school PSHE is taught explicitly weekly, is ongoing through the school ethos and additionally with key focus weeks, including Mental Health Week, e-safety, Anti-Bullying Week. These allow us to shine a spotlight on important issues for PSHE. On many occasions our children are involved in various workshops such as online safety, anti-radicalisation, mental health, healthy eating, road safety and drama workshops. These workshops help to promote and improve the children's confidence and awareness. Assemblies and Collective Worship take place weekly in which children learn the importance of British Values and respecting everybody's rights as well as learning about our Catholic values and reflection.


School Allotment

The school allotment is an opportunity for all our children children’s to develop their physical and mental health. Throughout the year all year groups plant and maintain our allotment and enjoy the harvest in autumn.


Laudato Si - Climate Change

Following Pope Francis’ advice on Laudato Si, we ensure our children have many opportunities to care for their common home. Climate Change and other environmental issues are weaved through our curriculum to raise an awareness amongst our children and equip them with the knowledge so they can grow up to become Eco-friendly adults who can contribute to a more sustainable future.  


Parental Partnerships

We believe that it is vital to work in partnership with parents to support our children's personal development and therefore we also offer a range of adult workshops in online safety and mental health and well-being.


Awards and Impact

Rights Respecting School

We are currently a Silver Award School and this year we are aiming to move to Gold Level Award. It is now more important than ever that children are encouraged to understand their rights, speak up and know how to play their part as global citizens.


Healthy Schools London Gold Award

Southwark has one of the highest rates of obesity in the country. Therefore we have worked hard to achieve Healthy Schools London Gold Award.


We are proud to say our children are healthy, happy and responsible members of the community, ready for the next stages in their lives.