New government plans in the UK would teach children about sexual consent from the age of 11 so that children can “better understanding of the society around them” and “make informed choices and stay safe.”
Education Secretary Nicky Morgan, who commissioned the new guidelines, said students should learn about “rape myths” before they become sexually active and it is “too late.” She went on to say that girls today are faced with “unimaginable” pressures.
“Mothers at the school gates often tell me about their worries for their daughters. They tell me that on top of the usual stress of school life and teenage years, they want to know their girls are being taught what a healthy relationship looks like and how to say ‘no’,” she wrote in the Sunday Times. “It’s our duty to ensure that our daughters leave school able to navigate the challenges and choices they will face in adulthood.”
Girls are not the only ones who need the lessons. Boys, too, would appreciate an education on the subject. At a talk at the Women Of The World Festival in London, called Generation XXX, four teens discussed the topic openly.
When these bright, forthright kids were asked, “What education around porn would you like in schools?” one emotional boy replied, “Anything… just anything. Everybody sweeps it under the carpet. We’re crying out for help and everybody’s just too embarrassed to go near it.”
After ministers concluded that the current expert advice on the subject was “inappropriate, explicit, or clearly at odds with fundamental British values,” new curriculum for personal social health and economic education classes would teach children about rape and sexual consent. The lessons are being written by the PSHE Association, a charity which had been purposely established in 2006 in order to offer teachers advice and support, reports Emily Gosden for The Telegraph.
The new plans are set to be implemented after the Easter break, telling students, “If consent is not clear, informed, willing and active, it must be assumed consent has not been given. ‘He/she got drunk with me’ is not an excuse for assuming consent.” Lessons will be given to classes in mixed and single-sex state and independent schools all across England.
The guidelines emerged after news concerning a child sexual exploitation scandal in Rotherham and Oxford went public, in addition to growing concern over young people “sexting.”
A Department for Education spokesman said:“We are ensuring teachers have high-quality resources and appropriate support and guidance so they can tackle the issues facing young people today. We will also raise the status of PSHE to recognise those schools which are already providing pupils with a well-rounded curriculum and ensure all parents can be confident their child’s school is providing a curriculum for life.”