For many of us, the sex education we received in school was sorely lacking from a lot of important information.
Our sex ed classes failed to cover consent, made no mention of LGBTQ+ sexual health and relationships, and there wasn’t a single reference to female pleasure.
Thankfully it looks like things are changing.
The Department of Education has issued a call out to parents and young people for their views on what should be covered in sex and relationships education.
The current guidelines for sex and relationships education haven’t been updated since 2000 – which explains why so many of us feel the advice we’re given is entirely irrelevant to the modern state of relationships (if you’re not covering online porn, sexting, and dick pics in school, you’re failing to equip students for things they’re very likely to encounter in their teens).
A consultation launched on Tuesday suggests that the new guidelines should include lessons on sexting, online porn, cyber-bullying, and LGBTQ+ issues, to keep young people informed and equipped with the knowledge to stay safe online and in real life.
The call out will last for eight weeks, and will focus on asking parents and young people what they’d actually like to see covered in sex ed.
It’s great that this call for change is happening now, as back in March the Department of Education announced that sex and relationships education would be compulsory in all of England’s schools. If we’re making sex ed compulsory, we might as well make sure it’s actually helpful.
‘It is unacceptable that relationships and sex education guidance has not been updated for almost 20 years, especially given the online risks – such as sexting and cyber-bullying – our children and young people face,’ said Education Secretary Justine Greening.
‘Young people must have an education that teaches them the importance of healthy and stable relationships.
‘This call for evidence is about giving teachers, parents and especially young people a chance to help shape that new approach and I’d urge them to take part.’
Once the recommendations have all been collected and sorted through, updates to sex and relationships education should come into play in Autumn 2019.
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