Nicky Morgan: Sex education forms an ‘important part’ of PSHE

Illustrated rainbow pride flag on a pink background.

Education Secretary Nicky Morgan has said all children should be taught a “curriculum for life” in schools to help them deal with issues such as revenge porn.

Ms Morgan made a speech at the Bright Blue thinktank, saying young people should be helped to “stay safe” through “managing their lives” better.

In it she noted NSPCC research showing that 60 percent of teenagers have been asked for sexual images or videos online, saying: “Many feel compelled to do it because of peer pressure or coercion.”

Later in the speech she said sex and relationship education is an “important part” of Personal Social and Health Education (PSHE).

“But it’s just one part of it,” she continued. “In fact, proper PSHE should be much broader and should offer young people what I like to think of as a ‘curriculum for life’.”

“I want more schools to put high-quality PSHE at the heart of their curriculum. It is an essential part of their responsibility to prepare young people for life in modern Britain. I know that the vast majority of schools and teachers recognise the importance of decent PSHE, and want to teach it well. That’s why this weekend I announced a range of measures to improve the quality and provision of PSHE education in our schools.

She also talked of “tolerance of and respect for those with different faiths and beliefs,” saying: “Schools are absolutely the right places for these things to be taught, promoted and embraced.”

A ‘revenge porn’ amendment to the Criminal Justice and Courts Bill received Royal Assent last month and became law, punishing perpetrators with up to two years in prison.

Ms Morgan earlier this week responded to a report that found that over a third of victims of homophobic bullying in schools were bullied by a teacher or adult.