To ask the Secretary of State for Education, if his Department will make an assessment of the potential merits of amending the curriculum for Personal, Social, Health and Economic Education to include lessons on visible facial differences.
15 June 2018
The Government is committed to supporting an inclusive society where everyone is treated with respect and fairness. Schools are already expected to promote the spiritual, moral, social and cultural development of pupils. Schools are free to teach about visible facial differences in Personal, Social, Health and Economic education (PSHE), where pupils can reflect on and challenge notions of prejudice and discrimination.
Following provisions in the Children and Social Work Act 2017, the Government is making Relationships Education at primary and Relationships and Sex Education at secondary mandatory through regulations. My right hon. Friend, the Secretary of State for Education has the power to make PSHE, or elements therein, mandatory in all schools. This is subject to careful consideration.
To support decisions on the content of these subjects, the Department recently conducted an engagement exercise with a wide range of expert stakeholders, as well as a public call for evidence, which received over 23,000 responses.
Using the evidence gathered during this process, the Government is developing the regulations and accompanying statutory guidance for these subjects. Both will be subject to public consultation followed by a debate on the regulations in Parliament.