To ask the Secretary of State for Education, if he will publish the (a) individuals and (b) organisations consulted prior to the publication of the Relationships Education, Relationships and Sex Education, and Health Education in England Government consultation response; and if he will make a statement.
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, who his Department consulted before drawing up the draft statutory guidance on Relationship's Education and Relationships and Sex Education for governing bodies, proprietors, head teachers, principals, senior leadership teams, teachers; what research was evaluated; and if he will make a statement.
Modern pressures children face such as harms related to the internet, as well as long-standing issues such as abuse or drug misuse, mean children are growing up in an increasingly complex world. That is why we are making making relationships education compulsory for all primary pupils, relationships and sex education (RSE) compulsory for secondary pupils, and health education compulsory for all state-funded pupils.
There is clear evidence that good quality RSE also has a protective function in other important areas, supporting further our rationale for making the subjects compulsory. For example, there are several studies that show a positive association between RSE and contraceptive use, and between RSE and later ages for first sexual intercourse, which are behaviours that reduce the risk of teenage pregnancy. Improving contraceptive use to prevent unwanted pregnancy has the potential to reduce abortion rates. Further information is available at the following links:
The Department conducted a consultation on the draft regulations, statutory guidance and regulatory impact assessment, which closed on 7 November. The Department was contacted by over 40,000 individuals and organisations. These included parents, young people, headteachers, teachers, governors, subject specialists, teaching unions, charities and faith groups. The Department analysed the responses to the consultation and have since published the Government response and updated the draft statutory guidance.
The key decisions on these subjects have also been informed by a thorough engagement process. The public call for evidence received over 23,000 responses from parents, young people and schools, and the Department engaged with 90 organisations representing a broad range of views. These stakeholders can be found in the Government response to the Call for Evidence at: https://consult.education.gov.uk/pshe/relationships-education-rse-health-education/supporting_documents/180718%20Consultation_call%20for%20evidence%20response_policy%20statement.pdf.