Sex and Relationship Education: Marriage

Department for Education written question – answered on 27th February 2018.

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Photo of Michael Tomlinson Michael Tomlinson Conservative, Mid Dorset and North Poole

To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what plans his Department has to ensure guidance and regulations on Relationships and Sex Education in secondary schools makes reference to marriage; and if he will make a statement.

Photo of Nick Gibb Nick Gibb Minister of State (Education)

The Children and Social Work Act (2017) places a duty on the Secretary of State for Education to make relationships education mandatory in all primary schools, and relationships and sex education mandatory in all secondary schools, in England. The Act also provides a power for the Secretary of State to make Personal, Social, Health and Economic education, or elements therein mandatory in all schools in England.

The Department has conducted the first stage of a thorough engagement process. As part of this process, the Department has received more than 20,000 responses to the call for evidence. The evidence collected will help determine the content of the regulations and statutory guidance. The Department will ensure the subjects are designed to safeguard and support pupils whilst also being deliverable for schools. The Departments expect the guidance to reflect issues relating to marriage and civil partnerships, such as the value of strong and stable relationships based on commitment.

The draft regulations and guidance will be subject to a full public consultation before the regulations are laid in Parliament for debate and vote.

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