The government has announced today that compulsory sex education is to be extended to all secondary schools, and will be introducing relationships education for all school pupils from age four.
The Education Secretary wants RSE (relationships and sex education) and PSHE to teach children and young people how to stay safe and healthy, and how to negotiate some of the personal and social challenges they will face growing up and as adults. She has recognised that these subjects form part of the building blocks young people need to thrive in modern Britain. At the moment, too many young people feel they don’t have the RSE they need to stay safe and navigate becoming an adult.
After 30 years of campaigning, NCB’s Sex Education Forum is delighted that sex and relationship education will now be mandatory in all schools, including academies and independent schools, and that all pupils will be taught about safe and healthy relationships.
The Government has responded positively to calls from parents, young people and experts in the education, children and young people’s sectors. Furthermore, the Government is considering the relationship between RSE and PSHE and we look forward to contributing to the consultation on how best to deliver this education on the range of issues that support children and young people’s health and wellbeing.
The Government has taken a positive step forward, now it's time to get the detail right, so that when RSE becomes compulsory in 2019, children and young people get age-appropriate teaching on their bodies, sex and relationships.