Physical Development, Health & Physical Education

Leader of Learning PDHPE – Mr Stephen Burns

The Personal Development, Health, and Physical Education Curriculum at St Mary’s Catholic College engages students in several key learning concepts. Ultimately, this subject explores the relationship between physical, emotional, mental, social and spiritual health. Students are equipped with the knowledge and skills they need to make lifelong positive health decisions and enable them to understand methods to improve or maintain their wellbeing.

STAGE 4 and 5 (YEARS 7, 8, 9 and 10)

In PDHPE Year 7-10 students learn about many topics related to health. Some of these areas include wellbeing, harm minimisation, changes during adolescence, relationships, health promotion, mental health, first aid and nutrition. Students also develop skills in problem solving, teamwork, decision making and goal setting.

Practical lessons for Year 7-10 students focus on movement as well as incorporating games-based activities. We encourage students to develop and maintain a healthy lifestyle and a passion for physical activity. Practical activities include dance, modified games, fitness activities and team sports. The aim of practical activities is to expose students to a range of movement contexts in the hope they embrace movement as part of their lifestyle.

STAGE 5 – YEARS 9 AND 10 Physical Activity and sports studies (PASS)

In Years 9 and Year 10, students continue to participate in the mandatory PDHPE course and can also select the elective subject Physical Activity and Sports Studies (PASS). This subject is a must for students interested in sport and fitness. Topics covered include anatomy and physiology, sports medicine, sports coaching, sports nutrition, acquisition of sports skills, and fitness development.


St Mary’s Catholic College offers four PDHPE courses in Years 11 and 12.

  1. Personal Development, Health and Physical Education – 2 unit
  2. Community and Family Studies – 2 unit
  3. Exploring Early Childhood – 1 unit
  4. Sport Lifestyle and Recreation – 1 unit

Our Stage 6 students are extended by these rigorous and challenging subjects, which provide the opportunity for them to explore and develop their passions. Students undertaking these Stage 6 Courses find they provide a wonderful grounding for further studies or careers in areas such as personal training, human movement, sports science, sports coaching, strength and conditioning, physiotherapy, nursing, health education, community work, childcare, community health and health promotion.