At Brook young people have been telling us for decades they want better sex and relationships education and today The Guardian has published an article - http://www.guardian.co.uk/lifeandstyle/2011/oct/10/how-good-is-sex-education - following a new survey carried out by Brook, that shows that not enough has changed.
Last night I was talking to a friend who is staying with us at the moment and she asked the straightforward question, 'what is all the fuss about'. And when you try and answer it, that is the question - we have to stop talking about whether to provide it, and instead move to how to do it - consider how we ensure teachers up and down the country are well trained and supported to provide young people with the sort of sex and relationships education they want, deserve and will need if they are to navigate the path from puberty, through adolescence and into adult with confidence and joy.
I feel like I am in a bit of a timewarp when it comes to SRE - the same debates rehearsed predictably often and we want to stop that circle and move on. Young people say they want good quality SRE, parents overwhelmingly support school SRE and professionals also support SRE because they know that young people need help and support to understand their bodies, their emotions, relationships and develop the skills to manage their lives. Indeed successive Government's point to its importance. Having been involved in this work for over 15 years, I and many others who have also been on this journey want to see a step change in commitment to SRE, and ask Government to mandate and support schools to deliver. I still believe that statutory SRE across the key stages is the best route to go down, but as I have said many times before as long as every child gets their entitlement to SRE to help them be confident, happy and safe I don't actually care what mechanisms are used to achieve SRE fit for the 21st Century.
This is a once in a decade opportunity to influence policy makers and parliamentarians make the changes all the evidence tells us are needed. We want to make sure the voices of the overwhelming majority who support SRE are heard. Help get this sorted once and for all. Visit www.sexpositive.org.uk and sign our petition to UK Parliament to create SRE fit for the 21st Century. Please help us spread the word - blog it, tweet it, talk about it so Brook can work with partners to make young people, parents and professional voices heard in the PSHE Review. We will be blogging and tweeting facts from the survey throughout the week - please join in the conversation.
Please take five minutes to help us achieve 21st Century Sex and Relationships Education - www.sexpositive.org.uk