What should my school be teaching me about sex and relationships?

The Sex Education Forum defines Sex and Relationships Education (SRE) as learning about sex, sexuality, emotions, relationships, sexual health and ourselves. The Sex Education Forum believes that learning about sex and relationships:

  • is a right for all children and young people, boys and girls those who are heterosexual, lesbian, gay, and bisexual, those with physical, learning or emotional difficulties, and those with a religious or faith tradition and every one whatever their background, community or circumstance
  • should begin in early childhood and continue throughout adult life
  • should be part of emotional and social development across all settings

Young people learn about relationships, sex and sexuality from lots of sources and some of them are more reliable than others. Some young people are lucky: they are offered all the information and support they need, to help them learn the facts and skills and prepare them for this very important part of their future lives.

Young people tell us that what they are taught about in school about sex and relationships can vary, but can help when it's delivered well.

I have heard that I don't have to go to SRE lessons, is that true?

It is compulsory for schools to teach the biological aspects of puberty, reproduction and the spread of viruses, and they do this as part of National Curriculum Science, which is taught to all pupils of primary and secondary age.  At the moment, teaching other aspects of SRE is not compulsory in schools.