Christian reaction to new sex ed proposals

Tue 19 Dec 2017
By Cara Bentley

UK Education Secretary Justine Greening has opened a consultation period for people to express what they want children to be taught in relationship education.

Relationship and Sex Education (RSE) will become compulsory in England in primary schools.

New proposals will likely include more education on transgenderism and same-sex relationships as well as changes to include teaching about the dangers of pornography and sexting.

Some Christians view the consultation period as a positive thing because Christian parents can speak out and say what they would like to see in RSE.

Rachel Gardner, Christian Director of Youthscape and President of the Girls Brigade, told Premier: "This is a wonderful opportunity to get involved and talk about the fact that we want our young people to grown into compassionate, kind adults with self-control and we really want that front and centre on the curriculum."

Up until now, only a third of all secondary schools have been required to teach RSE.

Gareth Cheeseman from the Christian charity Acet UK which runs sex education classes said: "Our concern at the moment is the number of young people who don't receive any relationship and sex education because their teachers are untrained and they don't have the curriculum time to cover it, anything that can help tackle that issue has the potential to be a positive force."

The news of including teaching about same-sex relationships has not gone down well with those who consider sexuality a moral issue which parents will have different views on.

Thomas Pascoe from Coalition for Marriage told Premier that young children are not old enough to understand that what they're taught isn't the view of everybody.

"Ordering children to take a moral position which they're not old enough to understand for themselves and their parents may not agree with is not education but indoctrination."

Tim Dieppe from Christian Concern told Premier that RSE classes do need to change, but not in this way.

He said: "The problem with sex education and the way in which it's taught in schools at the moment is it has no moral framework, it's taught as if it's in a moral vacuum.

"It leaves children with no sense of boundaries, of self-control, of moral values or of how to think about these things."

The Education Secretary has promised to be respectful fo different faiths in the issue.

Greening said: "I know that there are many views within this debate and we will look to make sure we hear from people of all backgrounds, faiths and beliefs as part of this process."

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