Why sex education needed reining in

Trans ideology and ‘sex positivity’ had taken over our schools.

Jo Bartosch

Jo Bartosch

Topics Identity Politics UK

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Finally, after nearly a decade of campaigning, trans ideology is being booted out of the classroom. Government guidance on relationships, sex and health education (RSHE) released today is clear that schools in England must stop teaching children gender-identity ideology as if it were fact.

The new guidance from the Department for Education recognises the threat this ideology poses to kids, advising teachers that they should not ‘present contested views as fact – including the view that gender is a spectrum’. It also acknowledges that teaching children to feel dissatisfied with their bodies in the name of trans inclusion ‘could prompt some children to start to question their gender when they may not have done so otherwise’. As the Cass Review showed, ‘transitioning’ can have devastating consequences for children’s long-term health and wellbeing. These ideas should never have been taught as part of RSHE classes.

Alongside the ban on teaching gender ideology is a commitment to make sex education more age-appropriate. The guidance wants to stop sex ed classes before the age of nine, as well as prevent explicit conversations about sex for under-13s. Teachers are now being told to stick ‘to the essential facts without going into unnecessary details’ when responding to ‘questions from pupils about age-restricted content’.

Crucially, parents will also have the right to see any RSHE teaching materials – something that has not always been the case previously. This follows multiple reports of unregulated experts exposing children to age-inappropriate ‘sex positive’ content and what amounts to trans propaganda, without parents’ consent or even knowledge.

Predictably, all the usual suspects have been left frothing with indignation at these proposals. Daniel Kebede, general secretary of the National Education Union, complained that new rules are simply ‘yet more culture-war noise from an ill-informed and out of touch government’. Meanwhile, Labour MP Sarah Champion asserted in a Sky News interview it is a ‘fabrication’ to suggest that children were being taught about sex at primary school. ‘I don’t know what this is trying to correct, because there isn’t the problem that this is trying to solve’, she claimed.

The idea that this guidance is responding to some non-existent, culture-war panic is nonsense. The government has undeniably tapped into the valid concerns of many parents. The new guidance reflects what grassroots parents’ groups like Our Duty, Bayswater Support and Safe Schools Alliance have been warning for years – that there is something deeply wrong with RSHE in its current form.

It doesn’t take much searching to find horrendous examples of the deranged things kids have been taught under the guise of RSHE. Last year, Year 7 pupils at Queen Elizabeth II High School in Peel, on the Isle of Man, were taught by a drag queen that there are 73 genders. In 2022, sex educator Justin Hancock told a girl who had been coerced into having sex for money that prostitution is a ‘rewarding job’. Hancock is the author of Bish, an online sex-ed guide for teens over 14, which also provides resources about ‘kinky’ sexual activities, like using manacles, irons and whips.

It’s good news that the updated guidance will keep people like Hancock far outside of schools. But as Lucy Marsh of the Family Education Trust told me:

‘Having seen many explicit relationships and sex-education materials that have been used in primary schools, it’s shocking that so many teachers think that this could ever be appropriate for young children. Sexualising and indoctrinating children in primary schools is child abuse – any activist teachers who continue to expose children to inappropriate content should be investigated.’

Let’s be honest, though, these threats to child safeguarding did not emerge from within schools themselves. This hypersexualised approach to child development and trans ideology are both mind viruses that have festered in the petri dish of online pornography.

For adult men who have deluded themselves into thinking they’re women, establishing the concept of the ‘transgender child’ has been a necessary step to social acceptance. It acts as a fig leaf for what is so often an adult fetish. Similarly, young girls – especially those who are same-sex attracted – have grown up in a world where their entire existence is sexualised. ‘Lesbian’, for example, has become just another porn category. Identifying as nonbinary or as a boy is an understandable opt-out of hypersexualised stereotypes.

It is true that while some schools dedicate endless hours to ‘sex positivity’ and ‘kink acceptance’, surveys show that many children still leave school without a comprehensive sex education or an understanding of what a healthy relationship looks like. But the fact is, the job of teaching kids how to be safe, uphold boundaries and develop morals is far too big to be shouldered by schools, especially in today’s pornified world. At the very least, thanks to this new guidance, schools will no longer be a part of the problem.

Jo Bartosch is a journalist campaigning for the rights of women and girls.

Picture by: Getty.

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Topics Identity Politics UK


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