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Health & Wellbeing

The Health and Wellbeing faculty compromises the Home Economics (HE) and Physical Education (PE) departments. Students develop knowledge and understanding in HE and PE, and apply this through practical skills. Students learn the importance of maintaining and developing their mental, emotional, social and physical health throughout school and on into their adult life. 

Health and Wellbeing is not solely delivered through the specific programmes in PE and HE, but also through Personal & Social Education (PSE) lessons with Guidance Teachers, together with other mainstream subjects.  Topics include: substance misuse, relationships, parenthood and sexual health. Students also benefit from a dedicated Health & Wellbeing period.


Physical Education (PE)

The PE department benefits from extensive, modern and well maintained sporting facilities, including:

  • Well-equipped fitness suite
  • Large Games Hall (4 badminton courts)
  • Gymnasium
  • Full sized floodlit all-weather pitch (astro)
  • Extensive grass pitches (2 rugby, 1 hockey and 400m running track)
  • Tartan 110m running track and long jump pit
  • Dedicated teaching classroom
Participation Policy

The PE Department runs a 'Positive Kit and Participation' Policy.  We ask students to bring PE kit for every lesson.  If a student is ill or injured, where appropriate, alternatives activities or tasks are set. 

The kit for every lesson policy is to promote participation and benefit students' health and wellbeing.

S1-3 Core PE – 2 periods per week

In S1-S3, students follow a broad and balanced curriculum in PE. There is a focus on the learning of new movement skills, understanding rules and tactics, and improving personal performances through evaluation.  Learners develop their Physical Competencies, Cognitive Skills, Personal Qualities, and their Physical Fitness. 

Below is a list of the physical activities that takes place within the S1-3 curriculum:

  • Rugby
  • Hockey
  • Netball
  • Football
  • Basketball
  • Fitness
  • Badminton
  • Gymnastics
  • Dodgeball
  • Athletics
  • Rounders

In S3, students have the opportunity to undertake the ‘Preparation for Nationals' course (accelerated route). This practical course is designed to up-skill students, using similar activities, terminology and assessment criteria as the SQA certificated courses delivered in the Senior Phase for PE. 

The non-accelerated route continues to build on the skills, knowledge and understanding developed in S1&2.

S1-2 Health & Wellbeing - 1 period per week

The specific purpose of this weekly lesson is to identify, improve and maintain a healthy lifestyle.  Students undertake a number of rotations and will cover topics such as:  healthy eating, nutrition, leadership, exercise for health, and mental/emotional aspects of health and wellbeing. 

S3 Health & Wellbeing – 1 period per week

During S3, students undertake a SQA ‘Wellbeing Award’ at level 4/5.  This award focuses on research and active participation into health and wellbeing and is assessed through presentations and a practical project. The award is run in conjunction with the HE and PE departments, with the support of the PSE programme, delivered by the Guidance team

S4 Core PE – 2 periods per week

Students undertake activities that look to enhance the knowledge and skills they developed in S1-3. They elect to specialise in at least 2 activities, with a focus on physical fitness and the development of more in-depth knowledge of rules and tactics.

National 5 PE

There are two units:

  • Performance skills: this is assessed through practical performances in basketball, badminton and hockey.
  • Factors impacting on performance: assessment takes place through the generation of a portfolio containing key questions. Students will produce a personalised development plan for the activities they undertake practically.
Higher PE 

There are two units:

  • Performance skills: this is assessed through practical performances in basketball, badminton and hockey, plus a choice of activity if undertaken outside of school.
  • Factors impacting on performance: Assessment takes place as a 2½ examination. Students will produce a personalised development plan for the activities they undertake practically.
Advanced Higher PE

 There are two units:

  • Performance skills: this is assessed through practical performances in an activity of the student’s choice.
  • Factors impacting on performance: Assessment takes place in the completion of a research project.
NPA: Sport & Fitness - Team Sports 

There are three units:

  • Coaching development: Students will be required to develop, deliver and evaluate a progressive sequence of coached sessions, considering legal obligations in terms of health and safety, data protection, and participant care.
  • Sports Officiating and Organising - Basketball: Students develop knowledge, understanding and practical ability of both officiating and organising basketball related tournaments.
  • Sporting Activity Participation and Performance- Basketball: Students acquire skill related techniques of basketball are given the opportunity to monitor and evaluate personal performance and suggest areas for future development.
Extra-curricular activities

In PE throughout the school year there are numerous extra-curricular sporting activities and trips to play other schools in: athletics, badminton, basketball, football, hockey, netball and rugby. Regional and national tournaments are entered in as many sports as possible.

The department is heavily involved in the delivery of a variety of ‘House Events’ throughout the year, culminating in the House Activity Day and the Athletics Championships in the summer.


Home Economics (HE)

The HE department benefits from two fully equipped practical teaching rooms and a general purpose teaching room. There is also a fully functioning garden with raised beds, fruit trees and poly tunnel.

S1-S2 core HE – 2 periods per week

Students gain a knowledge and understanding of the key topic areas in HE through both a practical and theory based course.  Topics include: safe and hygienic practices, cookery skills and techniques, Scottish Dietary Goals, nutrients and ingredients, seasonality, food labelling, sustainability and Fair Trade.  

S3 HE elective – 3 periods per week

Students will develop the practical skills and specific technical knowledge and understanding to build towards the completion of the Hospitality and/or Health and Food courses in the Senior Phase.

National 4&5 and Higher Health & Food Technology

There are three units

  • Food for Health:  Students develop knowledge and understanding of the relationship between food, health and nutrition. Gaining knowledge of dietary needs for individuals or groups (i.e. teenagers, toddlers etc.) students will utilise current dietary advice to produce and reflect on food products which meet such individual needs.
  • Food Product DevelopmentStudents develop knowledge and understanding of the functional properties of ingredients in food.   Using safe and hygienic food practices they develop new food products, understanding the processes and stages involved.
  • Contemporary Food IssuesStudents will explore factors which may affect food choices and develop knowledge and understanding of contemporary food issues. They will consider technological developments in food and organisations, food labelling and the protection of consumer interests.
National 5 Hospitality: Practical Cookery

Throughout the course, students develop their understanding of safety and hygiene when working with ingredients as well as the importance of following safe and hygienic practices at all times in a practical context. Students will plan, prepare and cook a three-course meal for a given number of people within a given timescale and present it appropriately.

There are three units:

  • Cookery skills and processes: This Unit aims to enhance learners’ cookery skills, food preparation techniques and their ability to follow cookery processes in the context of producing dishes.
  • Using and Understanding Ingredients: This Unit aims to enhance learners’ knowledge and understanding of ingredients from a variety of different sources and of their characteristics.
  • Organisational Skills for Cooking: This Unit aims to extend learners’ planning, organisational and time management skills.
National 4/5 Early Years Education & Childcare

Compulsory units:

  • Development and Wellbeing of Children and Young People: Students learn sequences and patterns in child development and the inter-relationship between all aspects of their development. Students will learn about the wellbeing of children and young people and how a variety of factors may affect their development.
  • Play in Early Learning and Childcare: This unit allows students to develop an understanding of the benefits of play for children and young people. They will plan, prepare and review play experiences, either in a real or simulated context.
  • Working in Early Learning and Childcare: Students explore the childcare sector and the ways in which the sector meets the care, learning and development needs of children and young people aged 0–16 years. Learners will consider career options within the sector and the skills, values, knowledge and qualifications required to fulfil these roles.

Students have the opportunity to experience real life education and childcare settings as part of a weekly placement.

Optional unit in National 4:

  • Maintenance of a Safe Environment for Children: Students learn key aspects of current health and safety legislation related to an Early Learning and Childcare environment.

Optional unit in National 5:

  • Care and Feeding of Children and Young People Students examine issues in relation to feeding of babies and the provision of food and drink to children and young people within Early Learning and Childcare settings. Learners will also develop an awareness of appropriate practice in relation to provision of hygiene for children.
Extra-curricular activities

The Gardening Club runs throughout the year and the produce is used to make a variety of food products.  The McMillan coffee morning and other charity events take place within the department.  The S1 residential takes place every year and students plan, prepare and cook their menus before leaving for their 3 night outdoor education experience.  Other trips and clubs run by the HE department include:

  • The Highland Show
  • Farne Salmon
  • Royal Highland Educational Trust: Estate day visit.
  • Rotary Young Chef