To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what steps his Department is taking to support schools to educate their students about the dangers of carrying a knife.
13 January 2021
The new subjects of Relationships Education (for primary aged pupils), Relationships and Sex Education (for secondary aged pupils), and Health Education (for all pupils in state funded schools) are being taught from this academic year. The content of the statutory guidance for the new subjects can help address the underlying causes of knife crime.
Pupils should be taught how to build positive and respectful relationships and appropriate ways of resolving conflict. The guidance includes a clear statement that pupils will be taught that resorting to violence is never acceptable. Pupils need to know how to be safe and healthy, and how to manage their academic, personal, and social lives in a positive way.
Health Education should also support a school’s whole-school approach to fostering pupil wellbeing and developing pupils’ resilience and ability to self-regulate. This integrated, whole-school approach to the teaching and promotion of health and wellbeing has the potential to positively impact on behaviour and attainment. Pupils should be taught about the benefits of hobbies, interests and participation in their own communities as well as the importance of physical activity. This can help focus on alternative activities pupils can engage in.
Issues around knife crime can also still be taught as part of a school’s wider curriculum. For example, schools can choose to include lessons on weapons awareness and gangs as part of their Personal, Social, Health and Economic Education or Citizenship curriculum, with high quality materials available to schools to support teaching in these areas.