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Personal Development

Our Mission Statement is:

'To educate each and every unique child in our care, to hear and respond to what God calls them to be'

This means that we aspire to give every child the opportunity to explore their vocation in life and achieve their best both academically and personally, within a framework of spiritual and moral guidance. We therefore place great importance on delivering a high-quality and responsive personal development curriculum to our pupils.

This personal development curriculum is underpinned by our Catholic Ethos and SJW Values. It includes Spiritual, Moral, Social, Cultural and Vocational development (SMSCV), Careers, Citizenship and British Values, Mental Health and Well-being, and Family Life Education (RSE).

Our personal development curriculum pervades all aspects of school life such as Catholic Life activities, Collective Worship, Subject lessons, the House System, extra-curricular and enrichment, pastoral and behaviour policies, trips and visits. In addition, some personal development topics are taught during discrete lifestyle lessons and tutor time, and on our Cross Curricular 'Values@' days. We link up with a wide variety of organisations so that our pupils can learn from experts, for example... West Midlands Police, Prison Me No Way, 2020 Dreams, Kenelm Youth Trust and Stand Against Violence. Also, our staff are involved with teaching some of the topics, and every interaction throughout the day is an opportunity for staff and pupils to learn more about themselves as a person.

Ultimately, our personal development curriculum aims to prepare pupils for being active, generous and compassionate citizens who will make a valuable contribution and have a faith-filled and happy life in Modern Britain.

Personal Development Maps

Citizenship and British Values

  • In Year 7 & 8, pupils focus on democracy, crime, and law in their Lifestyle lessons, learning about the electoral and law-making process. 
  • Pupils sign a behaviour and online safety contract when they join St John Wall to demonstrate understand of rules and laws. 
  • Pupils embrace diversity by being part of our 'Catholic School for All' and taking part in Cultural Heritage Day and Black History Month activities. 
  • In RE & Health & Social Care, pupils study protected characteristics and learn more about stereotypes and the issues of discrimination in the UK. 
  • On Values@ Days, pupils engage with public services including West Midlands Police, Saint John's Ambulance, and prison officers (PMNW) as a reminder on how to keep safe in and out of school. 
  • Pupils work with local charities including St Chad's Sanctuary and Aspire, volunteering their time to support the vulnerable members of society. 
  • In Maths and Lifestyle, pupils explore budgeting and money saving tips. They also learn about the dangers of gambling and addiction. 

Relationships and Sex Education (Family Life Education)

  • On Values@ Days and during Lifestyle (at KS3), pupils explore the importance of maintaining a healthy lifestyle including personal hygiene, how to look after their teeth and how to get a good night sleep.
  • Through the Personal Development FT booklet, pupils explore the difference between banter and inappropriate behaviour through learning about the dangers of Peer-on-Peer abuse. 
  • In Lifestyle lessons, pupils are taught basic first aid, including how to administer CPR and how to support someone who is having an allergic reaction.
  • Some pupils are supported through our internal mentoring programmes: 'You are Awesome' and 'Dare To Be'. They are encouraged to develop self-confidence, relationship and communication skills.
  • In Year 9 RE, pupils look at the 'Journey of Life', learning about key topics such as the sacraments including marriage, procreation, contraception, and family life. 
  • As part of our induction timetable, Year 7 take part in Team building activities with external providers. 

Mental Health and Wellbeing

  • Each term, all pupils in the school write 'Letters to self', encouraging them to share their thoughts and feelings with their form tutor. 
  • Circle Time activities develop pupil's emotional literacy in Year 7-9. Themes covered include joy, loss and understanding anger. 
  • Year 10 complete the 'Passport to Life' booklet during form time which supports them with revision techniques and coping with exam stress.
  • Prior to each examination, pupils have a Collective Worship to help them prepare for assessment week. 
  • We have a email address available for all our pupils and staff to contact if they need support. 
  • We have visiting speakers including the Kenelm Youth Trust who lead workshops with pupils who are identified by our pastoral team. 


  • Pupils have opportunities to reflect on learning experiences both in and out of lessons. For example, team talks following sports matches to reflect on how the game was played and agree the next steps; a reflective log in music lessons where pupils assess what they have done well and identify the next steps to make progress changed over time, an opportunity to listen back, make changes and re-record.
  • In Science lessons, pupil’s study various topics that contributes to their perspective on life.
  • Person in charge of Catholic Life and the Lay Chaplain organise Masses and services for pupils to attend.
  • Pupils are able to visit the Chapel and speak with the Lay Chaplain.
  • Pupils in all years have opportunities for pupil leadership, including our Faith Ambassadors who lead pupils in their spiritual development. 
  • We offer pupils and staff the opportunity to attend adoration in front of the Blessed Sacrament.
  • Each day begins with a daily reflection focusing on the theme of Sunday's Gospel
  • An opportunity to pray the rosary is offered to staff and pupils during May & October

  • Pupils write, arrange and take part in all Collective Worship including Masses and Services. 
  • As a Catholic School for All, we discuss and reflect on the celebrations of other religions including Diwali.
  • The RE KS3 curriculum has been developed to study other religions within the Bishop’s RE Curriculum.
  • In Year 7 & 9, pupils have the opportunity to reflect on their spirituality on retreat to Alton Castle & Soli Youth Retreat Centre.
  • The Quo Vadis Mental Health programme has been introduced in to Lifestyle lessons to provide wellbeing support rooted in the Catholic faith. 
  • During the last week of term, pupils have the opportunity to explore different religions, including Judaism and events which have impacted the religious practices today. 


  • Looking at right and wrong:  History pupils learning about the Suffragette movement.
  • In Year 10 RE lesson, pupils study the sensitive topics of euthanasia and abortion.
  • Pupils show an interest in and respect for other people's feelings and values. Within lessons, pupils investigate and offer reasoned views about moral and ethical issues.
  • In History, pupils study the impact of how the Germans treated different sections of society.
  • Fund raising activities always have a high profile within the school including cake sales, Family Fast Days & our summer fete.
  • TenTen Theatre resources are used to encourage pupils to reflect on moral issues such as love, relationship and life changing decisions.
  • Collective Worship covers many events/topics such as Anti-Bullying Week and County Lines
  • Our November Values@ Day focuses on right choices, including visiting speakers from the Police and 2020 Dreams
  • In Food Technology pupils examine food packaging and how products are labelled.
  • During form time, pupil use the Values@ PowerPoint to consider how to make the right choices and understand how their brain works.
  • Pupils are encouraged to reflect on their choices and behaviour through our Saints League.
  • We work closely with the police to promote right choices.


  • In English, pupils have the opportunity to learn in a variety of settings. Expectations for learning are carefully transferred from classroom to ICT suite, to the Learning Resource Centre.
  • The warm relationships enjoyed by pupils with their teachers is commented on by all visitors to the school.
  • BBC Young Reporter: Pupils work together as a team to decide the story, communicate clearly to their audience and work to a deadline.
  • In Geography pupils investigate natural disasters and learn the social consequences of these events.
  • Pupils have the opportunity to visit the Galleries of Justice in KS4 History.
  • Restorative Justice meetings take place to ensure pupils get along with each other and that any issues are dealt with appropriately.
  • House Competitions are an opportunity for pupils working in teams to achieve house points with the support of their peers.
  • In RE, pupils complete a D type question which asks them to discuss a controversial issue.
  • In Year 7 & 9, pupils have the opportunity to develop their team building skills on retreat to Alton Castle & Soli Youth Retreat Centre.
  • In science pupils study the reproduction – aspect of life and relationship.
  • During the last week of term, pupils have the opportunity to visit local places of interest including Birmingham Art Gallery.


  • The cultural environment of the school is a warm and caring one created so that pupils may thrive.
  • Pupil successes are celebrated in as many ways as possible; posters around the school, achievement assemblies and celebration evenings all help to show pupils how they are valued as individuals. It is always heart-warming to see pupils celebrating the achievements of their peers.
  • Displays celebrate and value both academic and extra-curricular achievements throughout the school.
  • The PE Department encourage opportunities for girls in what may be perceived as typically male dominated sports for example Football.
  • Humanities trip to Europe.
  • Each year we celebrate Black History Month, this culminates in our Cultural Heritage Day- a huge celebration of the multi-cultural community we belong to. Pupils are invited to wear cultural clothing.
  • EAL Department work with pupils from a variety of cultures and backgrounds.
  • Pupils from each house learn about and celebrate their patron – Nelson Mandela, John Paul, Emmeline Pankhurst, Martin Luther King and Mahatma Gandhi.


  • All pupils look at who God is calling them to be in collective worship and form time.
  • All pupils focus on careers and vocations during our March Values@ Day. 
  • We work closely with the Diocesan Vocations Office and invite key speakers in to discuss their vocation.
  • Year 8 Pathways process encourages pupils to think about what God is calling them to be.
  • Year 10 Passport for Life enables pupils to reflect on who they are as a person and what they think their future holds.
  • All departments allow opportunities for links to vocations within lessons.
  • Career advice and interviews focus on who God is calling them to be.
  • Each department created resources on careers and vocations celebrated National Careers Week'