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Highgate Biology teacher, Vicky Stubbs, has been awarded RSE Educator of the Year in the innovation category at the Sex Education Forum Awards. These annual awards are designed to celebrate excellence in teaching relationships and sex education and are judged by a panel of young people.

The innovative bystander intervention training programme for sixth formers began in Michaelmas 2021, as part of our extensive anti-sexism work across the school. Vicky Stubbs explains: “The aim of the Bystander Intervention Programme is to shift unhelpful/ harmful social norms around sexism, language, victim-blaming and sexual behaviour, encouraging our young people to recognise that we all contribute to the culture of the community in which we live”.

“We’ve been so pleased by the thoughtful way that so many pupils have engaged with the programme, helping us to keep shaping it so that it better meets their needs, and by the willingness of so many sixth formers to share their learning with younger pupils going forward.”

In addition to the current programme for Y12, which will continue, we are working together with some of these pupils to customise the training for younger years in the middle school. The plan is that 30 Y12 pupils will work with Y10s, as well as teacher-led sessions for Y9s.

Rebecca Baxter, Deputy Head (Pastoral) at Highgate, continues: “Vicky’s work on this course has transformed our RSE provision in the Sixth Form, and the involvement of pupils in developing the course and in passing on what they have learnt to younger pupils has helped to reinforce our belief in the importance of pupil voice in effective RSE teaching and learning.”