Registration now at http://goo.gl/forms/brv0k9F8Mr.
Within our society, many parents continue to find it difficult to discuss the changes their children will encounter as they enter into puberty. Simple examples include: a young girl’s first period, growth spurts, wet dreams, the reproductive organs and how they function….But ask any young person, and they’ll tell you that these are just the tip of the iceberg when navigating the perilous waters of puberty.
What about those unexpected erections in math class? The sudden onset of that strange tingling sensation in the genitals? The often crippling sense of awkwardness in social situations, coupled with a sustained suspicion that you might not be completely normal? What to do about tension within the family, stress and depression? What to do if you or someone you know is prone to self-mutilation?
Having taught many young people over the years, I have found that there is often little to no guidance in their lives when it comes to the subject of sex. What they do have in abundance are social and cultural barriers in school and at home that prevent them from getting answers to the questions they really want to ask.
And while the media and the public continue to express shock over the now almost epidemic levels of teen pregnancy within the country (I think the latest figure is 50 cases a day?) this is hardly news. Baby dumping and teen pregnancies are as much a staple of national news as corruption and racism.
The answer is simple: Teens need comprehensive sex education.
But hey, don’t just take my word for it – research by the UK government shows that comprehensive sex education has a significant impact on pupils’ academic performance, employability, and future life chances – that’s why it’s a compulsory subject under the British National Curriculum. In the US, they found that teens who received comprehensive sex education were more likely to delay sexual activity, and when they did become sexually active, were more likely to use protection compared to teens who received abstinence-only sex education.
For more information on comprehensive sex education, please visit: www.goodsexed.info.
So in the absence of good sex education within our national curriculum, I thought it’d be a good idea to make it available in the same way private tuition is available for core subjects like math, science and english. You know, when school just isn’t doing enough for the kids…
Through this class, young people will gain practical information, skills and values to make informed decisions as they enter adulthood. The lessons will enhance their ability to have safe, fulfilling and enjoyable relationships with parents and peers. They’ll also learn how to take responsibility for their personal health and well-being.
Added focus on current affairs and living in the wider world will also keep them informed of the latest news, and empower them with the personal and social skills to negotiate life’s challenges, opportunities and risks. Of course, the weekly lessons also double as a safe space for them to get answers to all those difficult or awkward questions.
I genuinely believe in the difference sex education can make to a young person’s life. Indeed I have seen many young people grow up more confident and secure, comfortable in their own skin and values, as a result of just a little bit of the right guidance in this oft-ignored part of education.
So, that said, I have lots of fun lessons planned out and I look forward to welcoming your teens in my class this February!