How Inclusive Is Sex Education in the UK in 2023? Hello everyone, I hope you are well. In today’s post, I will be sharing a press release from ellaOne. ellaOne is the most effective morning-after pill*. It works by delaying ovulation and can prevent pregnancy up to five days after unprotected sex or contraceptive failure. Using data from a recent survey and chatting with sex educator Landa Fox and Life Lessons co-founder Nicole Rodden about inclusivity’s importance in sex education. ellaOne has recently reflected on a study they conducted in 2019 that found that more than a third (35%) of participants wanted to learn about lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender topics and relationships during their sex education. Only 17% of participants reported that they had previously learnt about such topics in education.
How Inclusive Is Sex Education In The UK In 2023?
A 2019 study by ellaOne®, the most effective morning after pill* found that:
- More than a third (35%) of over 1,000 18-35-year-olds wanted to learn about lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender topics and relationships during their sex education.
- However, only 17% reported having learned about these topics.
- Additionally, two in five (36%) men said they didn’t learn about periods or the menstrual cycle during sex education, compared to one in five (19%) women.
Four years later, how inclusive and comprehensive is sex education? The UK government reviews relationship and sex education in schools following reports of ‘inappropriate lessons’ being taught. The review will be completed by the end of 2023.
According to the latest poll, some of the topics that were not covered enough or at all in sex education included power imbalances in relationships (58%), pornography (58%), culture and faith-based perspectives (57%), LGBTQ± relevant information (54%), the attitudes and behaviour of boys and men towards women and girls (55%), and what a healthy relationship looks like, including online relationships (54%).
ellaOne® is committed to providing inclusive sex education through its website, ellaone.co.uk. In addition to information about emergency contraception, they also provide content on safe online dating, the history and future of sex toys, and the innovators trying to bring sex education into the 21st century.
The Challenges And Opportunities Of Sex Education In Schools
Nicole Rodden, the co-founder of Life Lessons, an organisation that supports schools to deliver excellent relationships and health education, says: “I used to teach RS and philosophy, and then PSHE. There were many challenges regarding teachers not feeling confident about these conversations (around sex and relationships).
And as a result, some children missed out on these conversations ultimately because the teacher didn’t have the tools or the confidence to do so. Traditional relationships and sex education used to be very negative, like those memes saying, ‘Don’t have sex because you’re going to get pregnant and die’.”
Sex Education For All: The Need For Inclusion And Diversity
“Sexual health education is a fundamental right for everyone, including disabled students. However, too often, disabled students are excluded from planned sexual health education. This can happen actively, such as when someone says, ‘They don’t need this information because they are [insert disability]’, which is entirely false. It can also happen passively, such as when education is not provided in a way that is accessible and meaningful for the disabled student.
For example, an autistic student may need more repetition, practice, and interactive examples to understand a concept fully. This is often not done. Due to historical marginalisation and discrimination, disabled people are often infantilized and denied sexual health information. Knowledge is power, and disabled students deserve to have the power to develop a sexual identity and engage in sexual behaviour that is safe, healthy, and fulfilling for them,” says Landa Fox, a Canadian sex educator.
The Importance Of LGBTQ+ Representation In Sex Education
“Traditionally, LGBTQ voices weren’t included (in sex education). We must teach a curriculum representing the young people in our care because otherwise, it won’t be relatable or relevant. We amplify young people’s voices, including those from LGBTQ backgrounds.
And we often get many applications from young people from LGBTQ backgrounds because, in the past, they haven’t been represented or heard in traditional RSE. We know that young people from LGBTQ backgrounds are more likely to face discrimination or bullying. And so we talk explicitly about how we can support each other in the classroom,” Nicole says.
Meet The Morning After Pill Committed To Inclusive Sex Education
ellaOne’s platform offers inclusive, medically backed, judgement-free information and articles about contraception, sex and relationships. They are committed to promoting various voices, including LGBTQ+, disabled and people of colour. You can learn more about ellaOne by reading their magazine, listening to their podcast and keeping up with them on TikTok.
I hope you enjoyed that.