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Christian Concern responds to compulsory Relationships and Sex Education (RSE)

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Today the government announced that Relationships and Sex Education (RSE) will be compulsory in all schools. It issued a call for evidence to invite views on age-appropriate content for the subject.

Responding to the announcement Christian Concern is putting out a call for parents and teachers to respond to the consultation making the point that compulsory Relationships and Sex Education will not help the sexual crisis confronting young people in the UK.

Andrea Williams, Chief Executive of Christian Concern made the following comments:

“ Sadly, sex education programmes in our schools have failed. We have the highest rate of teenage pregnancies and sexually transmitted diseases in Europe. Ironically, a recent study has shown that when government funding was cut for sex education programmes the number of teenage pregnancies went down.

“We have created a highly sexualised culture that is not healthy for our children and young people. We are now living with the devastating consequences of that. The government and lobby groups with a highly liberal and indoctrinating agenda tell us that our children can be educated out of such sexualisation. More sex education has not worked up to now and will not work in the future.

“There is no ‘age-appropriate’ way to teach primary school children about sexual relationships. Nor should primary school children be taught about homosexual relationships or transgenderism as they are too young to engage with such concepts.

“Sex and relationships education cannot be taught in a moral vacuum. Not so long ago it was a thing of great beauty and virtue to encourage our young men and women to keep themselves pure until marriage. This is not an outmoded concept. Our young people are crying out for boundaries. Our young people want to know that they can say “no”.

“At secondary school, marriage between a man and a woman should be taught as the gold standard of relationships. Marriage is the recognition of long-term, committed, stable, exclusive relationships which are the most fulfilling relationships, and which have the most benefit for society as well as being the best environment for children to be brought up.

“Children should be taught about relationships within a clear moral framework which gives them good grounds to resist sexual pressures and to prepare themselves for marriage. Sex should not be trivialised as something to play with or experiment with. Saving sex for marriage makes it more likely that your marriage will be long-lasting. Children should be taught to respect their bodies and to save sexual relationships for marriage.

“Parents are the primary educators of children. Children mature in different ways and at different times. Only parents can best know when a child is mature enough to discuss matters of sexual morality. Matters of morality are not for the state to dictate.

“There is a legal right in the Children and Social Work Bill for faith schools to teach according to the tenets of their faith, and for parents to withdraw their children from sex education. These rights should not only be retained, but also extended to include relationships education across all age ranges.

“Children need to be provided with clear boundaries so that they know what is right and wrong. They should be protected from pressure to conform to the sexualisation of society.

“There is a danger that relationships and sex education is more about state indoctrination than it is about education.”



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