Sex Education Forum

United for quality relationships and sex education

About the Sex Education Forum

Established in 1987, the Sex Education Forum is a group of partners working together to achieve quality relationships and sex education (RSE) for all children and young people. Our membership for schools and other educators serves to  connect organisations and individuals with the latest practice, research and policy information. 

Our work on RSE is underpinned by evidence, a rights-based approach and the expressed needs of children and young people. We endeavour to achieve  three main objectives:

  1. Ensuring RSE is firmly embedded into national and local government policies and public understanding. To achieve this we have been at the forefront of the campaign for statutory RSE, and will continue to work to influence policy.
  2. Supporting professionals to be well informed and competent to commission, plan, teach, evaluate and research RSE.​ Our membership keeps educators informed and we offer a range of training courses and take on projects to expand the reach of high quality RSE. 
  3. To identify, explore and respond to new themes emerging in practice, policy and research, nationally and internationally. We form partnerships with researchers and regularly push the boundaries on issues that impact on children and young people's health and wellbeing.

Our values and principles 

Our commitment to high quality RSE in schools is summarised in the 12 principles displayed in this poster, which also demonstrates how we work with partners to unify voices in support of evidence-based RSE.   

We constantly welcome new partners and new members to join us. If you would like to sample our information it is simple to sign up for our free newsletter.  

All our partners are in agreement with a set of 10 values. These apply to RSE across a range of settings, including schools.

The Sex Education Forum believes that quality SRE should:

  • Be accurate and factual, covering a comprehensive range of information about sex, relationships, the law and sexual health, in order to make informed choices. In schools this should be part of compulsory curriculum provision;
  • Be positively inclusive in terms of gender, sexual orientation, disability, ethnicity, culture, age, religion or belief or other life-experience particularly HIV status and pregnancy;
  • Include the development of skills to support healthy and safe relationships and ensure good communication about these issues;
  • Promote a critical awareness of the different attitudes and views on sex and relationships within society such as peer norms and those portrayed in the media;
  • Provide opportunities for reflection in order to nurture personal values based on mutual respect and care;
  • Be part of lifelong learning, starting early in childhood and continuing throughout life. It should reflect the age and level of the learner;
  • Ensure children and young people are clearly informed of their rights such as how they can access confidential advice and health services within the boundaries of safeguarding;
  • Be relevant and meet the needs of children and young people, and actively involve them as participants, advocates and evaluators in developing good quality provision;
  • Be delivered by competent and confident educators;
  • Be provided within a learning environment which is safe for the children, young people and adults involved and based on the principle that prejudice, discrimination and bullying are harmful and unacceptable.

If you agree with these values and principles why not become a partner or member of the Sex Education Forum.