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Sex and Relationships Education to be Mandatory in All England Schools

The government has announced that Sex and Relationships Education is to be made mandatory teaching in all England schools from the age of 4. Until now it was only compulsory for SRE to be taught in council-run schools. Education secretary Justine Greening in an interview with the BBC said:

“At the moment, many schools teach sex and relationships education. But it’s not mandatory, and, therefore, for many children, they are not coming out of our schools really being equipped to deal with the modern world or indeed be safe and protected from some of the very modern challenges that young people face on cyberbullying and sexting.

“What we’re introducing today is mandatory relationships and sex education in all secondary schools, but also mandatory relationships education in primary schools as well.

“And, of course, all of this, it’s important, is age-appropriate and, of course, it’s also important to retain, for sex education, a parent’s right to withdraw their child.”

Our You First domestic abuse services have long been working alongside many other voluntary and charitable organisations across the country, delivering healthy relationships training to children in schools and within our refuges. We’re committed to continue this important work and are thrilled the government has recognised its importance.

“It’s really great that the government has made the decision to make such teaching mandatory, and from an early age – we see stories all the time in the news about children who have been groomed, molested and led to believe by the perpetrator that the relationship they have is ‘normal’ and they don’t always have any way to know otherwise,” says Tonia Redvers, YOU’s head of Domestic Abuse services.

“Learning about healthy relationships from a young age is positive for building communities free from domestic abuse and violence. By making this education in schools mandatory all children are given an equal opportunity to learn how to engage with each other in a positive, respectful way as they grow”.

 

You First Hampshire delivering a session on healthy relationships with children last year, as part of the ‘Think Safe’ initiative.