Age limits to be imposed on school sex education for first time, reports

Age limits are set to be imposed for the first time on when children can be taught sex education, according to reports.

Under the proposals, schools will be told not to teach children any form of sex education until year 5, when pupils are aged nine.

Other measures due to be announced by Education Secretary Gillian Keegan will prevent children from being taught they can change their gender, and rules out any explicit sexual conversations until the age of 13, according to The Times newspaper.

Thirteen would also be the age threshold for pupils to be taught about contraception, sexually transmitted infections, and abortion.

The new guidance is reportedly part of the Government’s response to concerns children are receiving age-inappropriate relationships, sex and health education (RSHE).

The Times reported that schools will be required to provide parents with samples of the material their children will be taught.

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RSHE became compulsory in all English schools in September 2020.

The existing guidance outlines broad lesson modules, stating primary school children should be taught about alternative types of families and healthy relationships.

Secondary school aged children are taught more complex topics, including puberty, sexual relationships, consent, unsafe relationships, and online harms.

The Department for Education said it could not confirm the newspaper reports, and that it would not speculate on leaks.

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