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News - 7 February 2015

MPs call for sex-and-relationships education in primary schools

The Commons Education Committee (CEC) have released the findings of an inquiry which was launched after Ofsted found more than a third of schools were failing to provide age-appropriate SRE.

The findings are in favour of all state primary and secondary schools in England having to teach sex-and-relationships education (SRE).

Committee chairman Graham Stuart MP said "young people have a right to information that will keep them safe".

The government said it would consider the findings carefully.

Liz Kennett, Audit and Accounts Manager of ABDS, and a Schools and Charities specialist comments:
“In 2013 Ofsted reported that personal, social, health and economic education (PSHE), of which SRE is a part, required improvement in 40% of schools. The CEC report said the subject should be given statutory status. But they also said parents should retain their right to withdraw their children from lessons.”

Lucy Emmerson, co-ordinator of the Sex Education Forum, said sex education was neglected in too many schools and urged all political parties to make a manifesto commitment to change the law to make the subject statutory.

PSHE Association chief executive Joe Hayman said statutory status for the subject would be "a huge step forward".

Shadow Education Secretary Tristram Hunt said Labour would make age-appropriate sex and relationship education compulsory in all state schools.

At present primary schools do not have to provide sex and relationships lessons outside the science curriculum, while state secondary schools have to cover sexually transmitted diseases as part of science for students aged 14 to 16 years old.

Academies do not have to offer sex and relationships education, but if they do they must take into account the Government's guidance.

If you need any help and advice with Free Schools, Academy Schools or Charities, contact Lavinia Newman, Peter Ham or Liz Kennett now to discuss how ABDS can help bring their experience to these matters.

ABDS Chartered Certified Accountants of Southampton.
Tel: 023 8083 6900  E-mail: abds@netaccountants.net

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