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Education – Sex education opt-out

September 2018

Parents are set to lose the right to withdraw their children from sex education when their child reaches the age of 15, and primary aged children should not be withdrawn from new ‘relationships’ classes.

The alarming new proposals were announced by Education Secretary Damian Hinds. He said parents should lose their right to withdraw their child in the three terms leading up to the child’s 16th birthday.

Sex education will not be made compulsory in primary schools, but parents will have no opt-out from new ‘relationships education’, he said. The Department for Education said the subjects will come into force from September 2020, but for the next 12-weeks the plans are subject to consultation.

Damian Hinds said, ‘I want to make sure that our children are able to grow up to become happy and well-rounded individuals who know how to deal with the challenges of the modern world.’

But earlier this year, a poll found most Britons believe that parents are best placed to decide when young children learn about sex. The ComRes research found 65 per cent thought that parents were most appropriate, with 66 per cent saying politicians were the least appropriate.