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Sex and Relationship Education

Question for Department for Education

UIN 66197, tabled on 1 March 2017

To ask the Secretary of State for Education, pursuant to the Written Ministerial Statement of 1 March 2017, HCWS509, on sex and relationships education (SRE), whether she plans that new regulations and statutory guidance on the teaching of SRE will include teaching on (a) transsexuality, (b) same-sex relationships, (c) staying safe online, (d) cyber bullying, (e) sexting, (f) violence against women and girls, (g) consent and (h) child abuse.

Answered on

8 March 2017

Following the announcement on 1 March, we plan to undertake a comprehensive programme of engagement with stakeholders to set out suitable, age-appropriate content on relationships and sex education (RSE) which focuses on mental wellbeing, consent, resilience, age-appropriate relationships and sex education, and keeping safe online. Schools already have a duty to comply with the requirements of the Equalities Act to ensure we remove any barriers to equality and help to build a fairer society.

Our key aim for the proposed relationships education and RSE, working in conjunction with PSHE, is to equip pupils with the knowledge and life skills they will need to stay safe and develop healthy and supportive relationships, particularly dealing with the challenges of growing up in an online world. The focus in primary school will be on building healthy relationships and staying safe. As children get older, it is important that they start to develop their understanding of healthy adult relationships in more depth, with sex education delivered in that context.

The regulations and guidance will be subject to full public consultation later this year, and we expect to see children and young people being taught this new curriculum in schools as soon as September 2019.