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Families best to protect children from sexual exploitation, not statutory sex education

20 January 2016

London, 29 January 2016: Confirmation that families have an important role in teaching children about staying safe from sexual exploitation was seen in the results of a survey published today.

According to the report from the Sex Education Forum, 44.53% of primary school children who took part in the online survey about what they learned in sex education, said that a parent or carer had explained safe and unwanted touching to them.

Antonia Tully of the Safe at School campaign, which promotes parents as the primary educators of their children, said: "This result shows that parents are engaging with their children on this issue. Parents are fully invested in their children's welfare, in a way that the state is not. Making sex education statutory will send a message to parents that they don't have a role in their child's sexual development."

'Usurping the role of parents'

Mrs Tully continued: "There are still some parents who are not teaching their children how to stay safe from sexual predators. The way forward is for schools to help parents engage with their children on sexual matters. Making sex education a statutory subject would mean that schools will usurp the role of parents."

Safe at School is calling on the government to clarify its policy on sex education. In July 2015, the government avoided taking up a recommendation that PSHE, which included sex education, should be made statutory.

However, there has been no positive confirmation that this subject will remain non-statutory, creating uncertainty in this important matter. In addition, the government failed to produce the report promised by the end of 2015 on how PSHE should be improved. And - most significantly - it has not yet consulted with any groups which oppose statutory sex education.

Contact Safe at School

Safe at School is a campaign of the Society for the Protection of Unborn Children (SPUC).

Antonia Tully can be contacted on:

  • Mobile: 07926 007175
  • Landline: 020 8660 3651

SPUC’s communications department can be contacted on:

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