The Christian Institute

News Release

‘Dangerous’ Lib Dem plans to force sex ed on 7-yr-olds ‘sexualise children’, The Christian Institute warns

The Christian Institute is raising serious concerns about the Liberal Democrats’ plans to force schools in England to deliver lessons on sex and relationships to children as young as seven.

The Institute is warning that making sex education compulsory would lead to greater sexualisation of children.

Currently only secondary schools are required to teach sex education. Primary schools have discretion whether or not to teach the subject.

The Christian Institute’s Director, Colin Hart, commented: “Under the Lib Dems’ dangerous plans, sex education would be centralised and put in the hands of groups that promote the use of resources which are wholly unsuitable for young children.

“Schools are already being recommended these resources, and if the Lib Dems get their way, our concern is that schools would be expected to use them.

“Extending sex education to primary schools will undermine parents as they face the difficult job of bringing up their children.

“In a sex-saturated culture, schools should be one place where children are allowed to get on with life without facing pressure to deal with things they aren’t ready for.

“At a time when there is growing alarm at the sexualisation of childhood, using sexually explicit resources in schools can surely only make things much worse.

“Too often in this area, schools can undermine the positive values of the home and sideline parents.

“Yes, children and young people are now increasingly exposed to internet porn, which is having a dangerous impact on their lives and relationships.

“But schools can already deal with these issues, in an age-appropriate way, without making sex education compulsory for children as young as seven.

“Groups that have a track record of promoting gratuitously explicit and inappropriate materials want to force these lessons on schools when there is simply no need, and in a way which does more harm than good.”

For example, the Sex Education Forum, which campaigns for mandatory sex education in primary schools, suggests on its website that primary schools use a book which shows drawings of a variety of sexual positions. It includes the line: “Here are some ways mummies and daddies fit together.”

The group also recommends a controversial sex education video, produced by Channel 4, called “Living and Growing” which includes an animated sex scene. A Government minister previously told Channel 4 to edit out explicit scenes, and since then the DVD has been removed from the channel’s catalogue.

In 2011, The Christian Institute revealed the fact that some local councils were already recommending these and other inappropriate resources for use in schools.

A recent poll of 18-year-olds found that of those questioned more believed that sex education should begin at secondary school than at primary school.

Earlier this year, Peers rejected an amendment that would have made sex education compulsory across all state-funded primary schools in England. The House of Lords voted down Labour’s proposals by 209 to 142.

Read The Christian Institute’s publication “Too Much Too Young” here.

Notes for editors:

The Christian Institute produced the publication “Too Much Too Young” in 2011, during a coalition Government review of sex education guidance.

Currently, state secondary schools run by local authorities must offer sex and relationships education, but free schools and academies are not required to do so.