Access thousands of brilliant resources to help your child be the best they can be. Sex and relationships education: We explain what goes on in primary school SRE lessons. However, the legal requirements for primary schools to provide sex and relationships education SRE are minimal.
So what can you expect your child to learn and when? Sex education and the National Curriculum Under the National Curriculum , the basics of sex education fall within the science curriculum. In Year 2, children learn that animals, including humans, have offspring that grow into adults. They should be introduced to the concepts of reproduction and growth, but not how reproduction occurs.
In Year 5, children are taught about the life cycles of humans and animals, including reproduction. They also learn about the changes that happen in humans from birth to old age. This includes learning what happens in puberty. However, they do have to teach a broad and balanced curriculum that includes science. Have an SRE programme tailored to the age and maturity of children.
Ensure that boys and girls know about puberty before they experience it, and how babies are conceived and born. Focus their relationships education on friendships, bullying and self-esteem.
The guidance suggests that most of this should take place in Year 6, before the transition to secondary school. However, many campaigners, including the Sex Education Forum, believe that starting in Year 6 is too late and that pupils benefit from a developmental programme of SRE throughout primary school.
This must be available to parents and reviewed regularly. The new sex and relationships education curriculum explained In March , the Government announced that SRE will become mandatory in all schools in England, including academies and free schools.
In primary schools, the emphasis will be on teaching children about safe and healthy relationships and staying safe. This will be included in the curriculum right from Reception, through to Year 6. At an appropriate age, likely to be Year 5 or Year 6, children will also be taught about sex, but parents will retain their current right to withdraw their children from these lessons.
In secondary schools, SRE lessons will continue to teach children about healthy relationships, and will also cover specific issues such as pornography, sexting, harrassment and consent. The Government will be holding discussions on what children should be taught and when, and there will be public consultations on the issues involved.
It's likely that the new SRE curriculum will come into effect in The quality and quantity of SRE varies enormously in primary schools; indeed, Ofsted has recently pointed out failings across the board, such as leaving teaching about puberty too late, and not teaching the correct anatomical terms for genitalia.
Using storybooks that open up discussions about sex and relationships. Circle time and question box activities, where children can post anonymous questions for group discussion. Drama, role-play and puppets. Watching videos and discussing what children have learned. Some SRE may be taught as a whole-class exercise, but children may also be split up into boys and girls or small groups at times: This should include supporting parents in talking about sex and relationships at home, and linking it with what will be taught at school.
For example, schools might invite parents in to look at the resources that will be used in class, or even provide materials to be used at home. The exception is the SRE content covered in the National Curriculum for science, which children at maintained schools have to be taught.
Teaching diversity There has been a lot of debate in recent years about how schools should handle relationships education — for example, whether they should promote marriage as the ideal family unit, or teach children about same-sex relationships. Care needs to be taken to ensure that there is no stigmatisation of children based on their home circumstances.