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Spiritual, Moral, Social and Cultural development 

Spiritual, Moral, Social and Cultural (SMSC) development is the over-arching umbrella that encompasses personal development across the whole curriculum.

St Luke's School continues to put SMSC ‘at the heart’ of school development to think about the kind of people we aspire to be, the kind of world we aspire to create, and the kind of education we aspire to provide.

The spiritual development of pupils is shown by their:

  • ability to be reflective about their own beliefs (religious or otherwise) and perspective on life
  • knowledge of, and respect for, different people’s faiths, feelings and values
  • sense of enjoyment and fascination in learning about themselves, others and the world around them
  • use of imagination and creativity in their learning
  • willingness to reflect on their experiences

The moral development of pupils is shown by their:

  • ability to recognise the difference between right and wrong and to readily apply this understanding in their own lives, recognise legal boundaries and, in so doing, respect the civil and criminal law of England
  • understanding of the consequences of their behaviour and actions
  • interest  in investigating and offering reasoned views about moral and ethical issues and ability to understand and appreciate the viewpoints of others on these issues.

The social development of pupils is shown by their:

  • use of a range of social skills in different contexts, for example working and socialising with other pupils, including those from different religious, ethnic and socio-economic backgrounds
  • willingness to participate in a variety of communities and social settings, including by volunteering, cooperating well with others and being able to resolve conflicts effectively
  • acceptance and engagement with the fundamental British values of democracy, the rule of law, individual liberty and mutual respect and tolerance of those with different faiths and beliefs; they develop and demonstrate skills and attitudes that will allow them to participate fully in and contribute positively to life in modern Britain.

The cultural development of pupils is shown by their:

  • understanding and appreciation of the wide range of cultural influences that have shaped their own heritage and that of others
  • understanding and appreciation of the range of different cultures in the school and further afield as an essential element of their preparation for life in modern Britain
  • ability to recognise, and value, the things we share in common across
    cultural, religious, ethnic and socio-economic communities
  • knowledge of Britain’s democratic parliamentary system and its central role in shaping our history and values, and in continuing to develop Britain
  • willingness to participate in and respond positively to artistic, musical, sporting and cultural opportunities
  • interest in exploring, improving understanding of and showing respect for different faiths and cultural diversity and the extent to which they understand, accept and respect diversity. This is shown by their respect and attitudes towards different religious, ethnic and socio-economic groups in the local, national and global communities

Fundamental British Values

We promote the fundamental British values of democracy, the rule of law, individual liberty, and mutual respect and tolerance of those with different faiths and beliefs.

As such, we demonstrate how we are meeting the requirements of section 78 of the Education Act 2002, in our provision of SMSC. Actively promoting the values means challenging opinions or behaviours in school that are contrary to fundamental British values. Attempts to promote systems that undermine fundamental British values would be completely at odds with our duty to provide SMSC.

The Teachers’ Standards expect teachers to uphold public trust in the profession and maintain high standards of ethics and behaviour, within and outside school. This includes not undermining fundamental British values.


Through our provision of SMSC we:

• enable students to develop their self-knowledge, self-esteem and self-confidence;

• enable students to distinguish right from wrong and to respect the civil and criminal law of England;

• encourage students to accept responsibility for their behaviour, show initiative, and to understand how they can contribute positively to the lives of those living and working in the locality of the school and to society more widely;

• enable students to acquire a broad general knowledge of and respect for public institutions and services in England;

• further tolerance and harmony between different cultural traditions by enabling students to acquire an appreciation of and respect for their own and other cultures;

• encourage respect for other people; and

• encourage respect for democracy and support for participation in the democratic processes, including respect for the basis on which the law is made and applied in England.


The list below describes the understanding and knowledge expected of pupils as a result of schools promoting fundamental British values:

  1. an understanding of how citizens can influence decision-making through the democratic process;
  2. an appreciation that living under the rule of law protects individual citizens and is essential for their wellbeing and safety (including guidance from The Prevent Strategy)
  3.  an understanding that there is a separation of power between the executive and the judiciary, and that while some public bodies such as the police and the army can be held to account through Parliament, others such as the courts maintain independence;
  4. an understanding that the freedom to choose and hold other faiths and beliefs is protected in law;
  5. an acceptance that other people having different faiths or beliefs to oneself (or having none) should be accepted and tolerated, and should not be the cause of prejudicial or discriminatory behaviour; and
  6. an understanding of the importance of identifying and combatting discrimination. It is not necessary for individuals to ‘promote’ teachings, beliefs or opinions that conflict with their own, but nor is it acceptable for school staff to promote discrimination against people or groups on the basis of their belief, opinion or background.

Personal Social Development

PSD enables students to develop the knowledge, skills and attributes they need to keep themselves healthy and safe, and prepare for life and work in modern Britain.

Skills and attributes developed include: resilience, self-esteem, risk-management, team-working and critical thinking.

These skills and attributes are needed to manage many of the critical opportunities, challenges and responsibilities students will face as they grow up and in adulthood.

PSD covers relevant issues, such as: abuse, drugs, the impact of the internet, the dangers of extremism and radicalisation, relationships and sex education and the importance of physical activity and diet for a healthy lifestyle.

Legal Requirements

St Luke's School ensures that a comprehensive programme of PSD is in place to respond to the demands of the Department for Education and the national curriculum that all state schools ‘should make provision for personal, social, health and economic education, drawing on good practice'.

Under section 78 of the Education Act 2002 and the Academies Act 2010, schools must provide a ‘balanced and broadly-based curriculum’ which promotes ‘the spiritual, moral, cultural, mental and physical development of pupils at the school and of society, and prepares pupils at the school for the opportunities, responsibilities and experiences of later life’.

Schools also have duties in relation to promoting student wellbeing and student safeguarding (Children Act 2004) and community cohesion (Education Act 2006). Paragraph 41 of statutory guidance on Keeping Children Safe in Education, the Department for Education states that 'schools should consider how children may be taught about safeguarding, including online, through teaching and learning opportunities.



Our Citizenship curriculum aims to ensure that all pupils:

  • acquire a sound knowledge and understanding of how the United Kingdom is governed, its political system and how citizens participate actively in its democratic systems of government.
  • develop a sound knowledge and understanding of the role of law and the justice system in our society and how laws are shaped and enforced.
  • develop an interest in, and commitment to, participation in volunteering as well as other forms of responsible activity, that they will take with them into adulthood.
  • are equipped with the skills to think critically and debate political questions, to enable them to manage their money on a day to day basis.

Our teaching seeks to develop pupils’ understanding of democracy, government and the rights and responsibilities of citizens. Pupils use and apply their knowledge and understanding whilst developing skills to research and challenge evidence, debate and evaluate viewpoints, present reasoned arguments and take informed action. Pupils are taught about: the development of the political system of democratic government in the United Kingdom, including the roles of citizens, Parliament and the monarch. The operation of Parliament, including voting and elections, and the role of political parties. The precious liberties enjoyed by the citizens of the United Kingdom. The nature of rules and laws and the justice system, including the role of the police and the operation of courts and tribunals. The roles played by public institutions and voluntary groups in society, and the ways in which citizens work together to improve their communities, including opportunities to participate in school-based activities. The functions and uses of money, the importance and practice of budgeting, and managing risk.

At Key stage 4 Teaching builds on earlier learning to deepen pupils’ understanding of democracy, government and the rights and responsibilities of citizens. Pupils develop their skills to be able to use a range of research strategies, weigh up evidence, make persuasive arguments and substantiate their conclusions. They experience and evaluate different ways that citizens can act together to solve problems and contribute to society.

Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Plus (LGBT+) Relationships

Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender (LGBT) relationships 

In lower school we cover in the modules 

  • CHANGING AND GROWING: Different types of relationships and,
  • THE WORLD I LIVE IN: respecting differences between people.

Middle School delivers:

  • SELF AWARENESS: Prejudice and discrimination,
  • MANAGING FEELINGS: Romantic Feelings and Sexual Attraction,
  • CHANGING AND GROWING: Romantic Relationships and Consent, 
  • CHANGING AND GROWING: Long term Relationships and Parenthood, 
  • THE WORLD I LIVE IN: Diversity, rights and responsibilities

Upper School, LGBT issues are covered in topics; 

  • SELF AWARENESS: Prejudice and discrimination,  
  • MANAGING FEELINGS: Romantic Feelings and Sexual Attraction, 
  • CHANGING AND GROWING: Romantic Relationships and Consent, and 
  • CHANGING AND GROWING: Long term Relationships and Parenthood.