Spiritual and Moral Development Across the Curriculum
The curriculum offered at Cardinal Wiseman School offers its students a wide range of opportunities to explore spiritual questions about the meaning and purpose of human existence and moral questions about ethical principles, character and decisions. It is credit to the excellent teaching and learning practices within the school that our students are fortunate to benefit from a rich curriculum which allows them to grow as spiritual and moral beings.
Every subject area has submitted a document which maps out opportunities for spiritual and moral development. This is a summary of the key ideas raised in every subject area:
This subject explores the ethical concerns raised by business interactions. For example, should profit be the only measure of a successful company? It explores the ethical recruitment and consequent treatment of employees regarding issues of race, gender and disability. It also explores the role and responsibility of business to the local and global community.
In this subject, the students are given the opportunity to appreciate the aesthetic quality of design and it is a medium to express feelings and imagination. It also challenges our students to consider the ethical concerns of design; for example, the need to create sustainable design and the impact of design in human lives. The question is raised, is a design good because it fulfils its function or because of the contribution it makes to the common good of all humanity? i.e is a land-mine a good piece of design?
The English curriculum explores spiritual and moral questions through a range of literary forms. Their questions range from individual introspection, ‘What is beauty?’ (Keats – poetry), to living in right relationship with our neighbour, ‘Where does prejudice come from?’(To Kill a Mockingbird – Harper Lee) to the role of God in human events, ‘Does the presence of God/the gods allow us to abdicate personal, moral responsibility?’ (Medea –Euripides)
These subjects offer our students opportunities to use a variety of mediums – art, music, drama, photography to explore human imagination and emotion. These mediums offer the human person a tool for communicating deeply held beliefs, values, dreams and desires. There is recognition of the interplay between the sensory expression of beliefs which may be defined as spiritual or religious e.g. the use of reggae, gospel or trance music as an expression of religious or spiritual beliefs. There is also recognition of ethical concerns such as the moral responsibility to avoid plagiarism.
This subject explores ethical issues raised by our relationships with each other and our relationships with our natural environment; obviously the two relationships are not mutually exclusive. The students explore the ethical concerns raised by issues of migration, crime, distribution of natural resources and trade. They question the exact nature of human responsibility towards my neighbour and the environment.
This subject offers insights into human relationship with power and government and principles which form the basis of a society. It explores defining events in the human story and how these events shaped our understanding of personhood. It critically evaluates the role of religious institutions in collaborating with and challenging those in power.
This subject offers students an opportunity to understand ICT as a tool for communication. They explore the changing laws regarding the use of ICT and the ethical concerns raised by the mis-use of ICT. They discuss the issues of censorship and e-safety. They look at the wider impact of ICT in areas of education, healthcare, entertainment and business and question the benefits and draw-backs to this phenomenon.
This subject offers students the opportunity to understand the legal system which governs our country. They discuss ethical concerns regarding custodial sentences, bail or civil partnerships. They also explore the defence of those who have committed criminal acts and recognise the different grounds for diminished responsibility for actions.
This subject offers students the opportunity to use mathematics as a tool to analyse and interpret data about a range of ethical issues. For example, students are given a resource about world food distribution or government spending on healthcare and have to present the data found in the resource. They then will consider the questions arising from the data and their personal response to these questions. The intention is that this will provide a further opportunity for maths to strengthen links with other curriculum areas.
Modern Foreign Languages
This subject explores the different cultural aspects of life in France and Spain. They learn about common concerns of family, education or healthy life-styles. They raise ethical questions about poverty and living conditions. The older students have the opportunity to explore spiritual reflections about the beauty of the planet, the need to work for peace and celebration of the differences of gender.
This subject offers students the opportunity for the development of moral character. They learn about the rules which govern sports and etiquette of sportsmanship. They discuss the qualities of a good leader within in sport and these qualities are transferable to all areas of life. They also study the ethics of sports and issues regarding the use of drugs to enhance performance and the role of the media and advertising within sports promotion.
This subject offers our students the opportunity to explore a range of personal, social and health issues and reflect on their ethical implications. They learn to reflect on their worth as an individual and the positive contribution they can make through their careers. They learn the importance of living in right relationship with themselves and other people.
This subject offers understanding of the British and American electoral process and the mechanism of governance in these countries. It critically evaluates the institutions for governance is ethically sound and if they truly offer all people a democratic engagement with power.
This subject offers students the opportunity to study different theories about the nature and development of the human psyche. It helps them to understand the variety and complexity of the human mind, behaviour and relationships. It reveals the difficulty of making ethical judgements about human behaviour and decisions. Our students are invited to develop a more compassionate and informed approach to complexity of the human person.
This subject focuses on the role of religion in society and the rites and practices of different religious traditions. It raises theological questions about the nature of God and the meaning and purpose of suffering. It focuses on the unique being and teachings of Jesus Christ. It stresses the responsibility of Christians in taking an active role in the world and the ethical challenges facing Christians today.
This subject raises questions about the role of science in our understanding of the universe and its contribution to human progress. The students are offered the opportunity to be amazed by the complexity of the laws which govern our universe and life on earth. They are invited to explore the different theories about life on earth, including the theory of evolution and whether these theories support or exclude the necessity for God. They are challenged to face ethical concerns raised by science ranging from global warming to genetic engineering.
The SEN team lay out the principles which govern their role and responsibilities within the school:
‘Wiseman SEN values live out on a daily basis a proper sense of society which is authentic and gives a powerful testimony to the Kingdom of God here on earth.’
They link these principles with OFSTED’s command that all schools have a statutory duty to ensure that SEN pupils are not discriminated against or disadvantaged.
Travel and Tourism
This subject encourages students to recognise and appreciate cultural differences experienced through the travel industry. It also looks at the values that underpin travel companies and their ethical treatment of customers.