If you were like me in high school, you probably thought that your sex-ed class was pointless considering it focused solely on straight sex and ignored… pretty much everything else. But luckily for students in England, an LGBT-inclusive sex-ed curriculum is coming their way, according to Bustle.
Now I’m not talking about anal sex, but this new curriculum will definitely be helpful. The Department of Education’s new guidelines on Relationships and Sex Education (RSE) in relation to LGBT topics in schools are “In teaching Relationships schools should ensure that the needs of all pupils are appropriately met, and that all pupils understand the importance of equality and respect. Schools must ensure that they comply with the relevant provisions of the Equality Act… under which sexual orientation and gender reassignment are amongst the protected characteristics.” Additionally, the guidelines state that LGBT content will be fully integrated into sex-ed programs instead of it being taught as a separate subject.
Students are expected to have been taught LGBT content by the end of the course.
The change came about after Terrance Higgins Trust, the UK’s leading HIV and sexual health charity, surveyed around 1,000 people to ask them questions about LGBT-inclusive RSE and the survey revealed that 97% of the participants are in favor of all RSE teaching LGBT-related topics.
Adding to the curriculum, along with contraceptive use and safe sex practices, students will also be taught about consent, abortion, and domestic abuse and schools have been asked to be cognizant of issues such as sexism, misogyny, homophobia, and gender stereotypes and teach students that such things should not be tolerated. This is definitely a good thing as, although many things are more accepted now, but those issues are still prevalent in modern society. The new sex-ed curriculum will also include topics such as internet safety and laws regarding pornography and sexting, which I believe is imperative as one text to the wrong person can have profoundly terrible consequences.
Mental health will also be touched upon, with ways to talk about one’s emotions accurately and sensitively and how to recognize warning signs of mental unrest.
Now of course this change is not without some resistance – a petition was created that demanded that parents have the option to take their children out of sex-ed classes that have the new curriculum. Because of this, not everyone will be taught the new curriculum, but we can all hope that enough students do.
What do you think? Will this new curriculum be beneficial to students in the UK? Or will this not make a difference?