Health and Physical Education (HPE) curriculum
The Ontario Ministry of Education has released a 2018 Health & Physical Education (HPE) Interim Education Curriculum. Beginning in September 2018, and until a revised curriculum is issued, all health and physical education programs for Grades 1 to 8 will be developed from the expectations outlined in this document.
There are three strands within each of the HPE programs in Grades 1 to 12: Active Living, Movement Competence, and Healthy Living. When delivering the Growth and Development unit of the Healthy Living strand during Grades 1 to 8, Ontario Catholic educators use the Fully Alive curriculum provided by the Institute for Catholic Education (ICE).
ICE views the HPE curriculum as an opportunity for parents and teachers to talk to students about a distinctively Catholic view of human life, sexuality, marriage, and family. These supplementary resources help our educators deliver the provincial curriculum in a way that is consistent with Catholic values.
The Fully Alive program for Family Life Education
In Ontario Catholic schools, Family Life Education is taught through the lens of the Fully Alive program in Grades 1 through 8. This program was designed under the guidance of the Assembly of Catholic Bishops of Ontario. The teachings focus on a distinctive Catholic view of human life, sexuality, marriage, and family. Its goal is to complement what parents are teaching their children at home.
There are five themes of the Fully Alive program:
- Theme 1: Created and Loved by God
- Theme 2: Living in Relationship
- Theme 3: Created Sexual: Male and Female
- Theme 4: Growing in Commitment
- Theme 5: Living in the World
“Through use of the Fully Alive program materials, Catholic teachers will continue to present the issue of human sexuality within the fullness of a faith-based family like curriculum that teaches the content of our faith, the value of persons, human relationships, commitments, and social responsibility.
As has been our tradition in Catholic education, the safety and well-being of students remains our priority and is reflected in the curriculum we deliver in our classrooms.”
– Ontario Catholic School Trustees’ Association (OCSTA)
Parents are the primary educators
We recognize that parents are the primary educators in their children’s lives. The OCSB aims to help with these teachings throughout each child’s journey. Should you have concerns about the material being covered in class, the first step is to speak with your school principal. They know your child and are prepared to answer any questions you may have.
Before each theme of the Fully Alive program is introduced, a letter of information will be sent home to parents. We encourage parents to visit the following websites to further inform themselves.
When students ask questions outside of the curriculum
Our teachers use grade-specific resources to help guide their instruction and classroom conversation. They are able to respond to the many questions that an adolescent learner may have about sexuality and human development. If a student asks a question that is not covered as part of the approved curriculum, teachers reassuringly recommend that it’s best for the student to have a conversation at home with their family.