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Government's Queen's speech schools bill will undermine child safety

18 November 2009

Government's Queen's speech schools bill will undermine child safety London, 18 November 2009 - The government's plans for schoolchildren will undermine child safety, said the Society for the Protection of Unborn Children (SPUC).

The BBC has confirmed that the Children, Schools and Families Bill will be part of the government's legislative programme in the new parliamentary year, which began with today's Queen's Speech.

John Smeaton, SPUC director, commented: "The government's plans to reform the curriculum by making sex education compulsory will undermine child safety by initiating children into an adult culture of abortion and sexual activity. The government has made clear that all schools following the national curriculum, including faith schools, must teach children about abortion and contraception in a so-called anti-discriminatory way. This means that children may well be taught that abortion is a legal right. It will certainly ratchet up the current policy of arranging secret abortions without parental knowledge or consent. (See Notes below) "In addition, the government's planned abolition of parents' right to withdraw older schoolchildren from sex education classes will undermine child safety by undermining parents' role as their children's primary educators. This role is enshrined in the United Nations Universal Declaration of Human Rights", concluded Mr Smeaton.

Notes: The government has accepted all the major recommendations of the latest report by the Teenage Pregnancy Independent Advisory Group. The report's major recommendations include that: "The Government's current review of SRE should... * ...[s]tate clearly that all schools including faith schools must teach all aspects of SRE within the context of relationships in an anti-discriminatory way; contraception, abortion and homosexuality are all legal in this country and therefore all children and young people should be able to learn the correct facts * ...[m]ake explicit links to young people's advisory services and provision of contraception and sexual health services and demonstrate this by teaching young people how to access services"

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