Sex and Relationship Education

Department for Education written question – answered on 21st March 2017.

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Photo of Lord Northbourne Lord Northbourne Crossbench

To ask Her Majesty’s Government, in the light of their decision to make sex and relationship education compulsory in schools, whether they will consider requiring all schools that have male pupils to recognise and promote the importance of the role of fathers in society; and what steps they are taking to promote responsible fatherhood and appropriate preparation of boys and young men for responsible fatherhood.

Photo of Lord Northbourne Lord Northbourne Crossbench

To ask Her Majesty’s Government what steps they plan to take to encourage schools to recognise and promote the role fathers should play in preparing their sons for future fatherhood.

Photo of Lord Nash Lord Nash The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Education

All pupils, irrespective of gender, have the opportunity to learn about the responsibilities of fatherhood in non-statutory Personal, Social, Health and Economic (PSHE) education or as part of the wider school curriculum.

Schools are free to draw on the non-statutory programme of study produced by the PSHE Association in planning their provision. The programme of study includes topics on the roles and responsibilities of parents and the value of family relationships. Issues relating to parenting skills are included for pupils at key stage 3.

Following the Government’s announcement of 1 March about proposals for Relationships Education, Relationships and Sex Education and PSHE, we plan to undertake a comprehensive programme of engagement with stakeholders about future provision in these areas. While we are not proposing to put content of the subjects on the face of legislation as this is too prescriptive and risks the legislation becoming out of date as the world changes, this process of engagement will enable us to get the balance of content right in guidance, enabling schools to design appropriate curricula. Regulations and statutory guidance will be subject to full public consultation later this year and the regulations will be subject to debate and vote in Parliament. Our plan is for schools to teach statutory Relationships Education, Relationships and Sex Education, and PSHE (subject to consideration and consultation), from September 2019.

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