Wednesday, 1 March 2017

4-year-olds are to be taught about healthy relationships

"Children from the age of four are expected to be taught about healthy relationships in the classroom, the Government has announced."

"Education Secretary Justine Greening is to make sex and relationship education compulsory in all schools in England."

"There has been a concerted campaign by backbench MPs - including former cabinet secretaries Maria Miller and Nicky Morgan - to better protect children in an internet age."

"In a written statement, the Government has outlined its proposals for a new system for sex and relationship education from primary through to secondary school in a bid to see off a rebellion."

"It makes `age appropriate` sex and relationship education compulsory."

Catching up with Scotland eh?

This has been going on in Glasgow for a number of years and although it is acceptable to remove your child from sex education, you are warned that teaching about relationships occurs across the curriculum. In other words, it is impossible to remove your child in any realistic way from any of this.

I remember being in my father`s house a few years ago - he was in his nineties - and his house was like a museum with all sorts of interesting relics scattered about the place. My small grandson liked to explore and investigate.

One day he reached for a letter on the mantelpiece and I had to say: "Don`t touch that. That`s private."

Immediately he grabbed himself and said: "No, you don`t touch private parts."

I was so embarrassed and felt instantly on the defensive. I said to my father: "Oh they get that at school." Fortunately, he was also a bit deaf as well as being distracted and he did not understand the nature of the exchange.

But I don`t thank the school. The word `private` no longer means what it used to mean to young children and these ideas once planted can never be removed.

As for keeping young children safe, that is nonsense. At one time it was possible to say of any child speaking or acting inappropriately: `Oh a young child should not know about that.` It would raise suspicion that the child might have been abused.  But that cannot happen any more. 

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