Monday 8th June 2020

Has the introduction of statutory relationships education, RSE and health education been delayed due to the impact of the coronavirus (COVID-19)?


The DfE has confirmed that relationships and health education in primary schools and RSE and health education in secondary schools will become compulsory from September 2020 as planned; however, schools are being offered flexibility on when to begin delivering these subjects within the 2020/2021 academic year.

Schools that are prepared to deliver teaching in these subjects and have met the requirements in the DfE’s ‘Relationships education, relationships and sex education (RSE) and health education’ guidance are being encouraged to begin delivering teaching from 1 September 2020, or whenever practicable to do so within the first few weeks of the academic year.

Schools that feel they will not be able to meet the requirements due to the impact of coronavirus (COVID-19) (e.g. time lost in school and competing priorities) should start teaching the subjects as soon as practically possible, and no later than the start of the Summer term in 2021. In these cases, a phased approach should be used (if needed) when introducing the subjects – mental health and wellbeing curriculum content should be prioritised.

When routine Ofsted inspections re-start, inspectors will take account of the context and circumstances of a school when looking at RSE provision. More information will be made in advance of starting inspections – we’ll update this article when we know more.  



DfE (2020) ‘Communication to schools on the implementation of Relationships Education, Relationships and Sex and Health Education’