Friday February 12, 2010

English Bishops’ Education Service Endorses Government’s Pro-Abortion Sex-Ed Guidelines

By Hilary White

LONDON, February 12, 2010 ( – New government guidance on sex education has been endorsed by the Catholic Education Service (CES) of England and Wales, despite its promotion of homosexuality, extra-marital sex, abortion and contraception. CES Director Oona Stannard called the guidance issued by the British government’s Department for Children, Schools and Families (DCSF) “a positive step forward.”

A media release from the DCSF said that the “list of stakeholders” involved in developing the draft guidance included the Catholic Education Service as well as several pro-abortion groups, including the Sex Education Forum. The Sex Education Forum is associated with the Family Planning Association (FPA), Marie Stopes International, Education for Choice, Brook, Stonewall, the Lesbian and Gay Christian Movement and the British Humanist Association.

In a response to increasing public dissatisfaction with the sexualization of young people, the DCSF press release says the document will help children “learn about the importance of marriage and stable relationships to family life, and the value of delaying sexual experiences.” But critics point out that the 62-page guidance includes thinly veiled endorsements of homosexuality and affirms the legitimacy of extra-marital sex, abortion and contraception throughout.

The guidance specifies that under the provisions of the Children, Schools and Families Bill there would be “no ‘opt-out’ from the statutory content” of government-approved curriculums in sex education. This statutory content includes the guiding principle that sex and relationship education “should be taught in a way that endeavours to promote equality, encourages acceptance of diversity, and emphasises the importance of both rights and responsibilities.” This language is interpreted by the government to include homosexuality and “a wide range of sexual practices.”

The document is intended as an aid to the development of sex education curriculums by individual schools, and under the law schools and governing boards are required to “have regard to the guidance.” The guidance is currently open to a public consultation, but experience has taught pro-life organizations that such consultations rarely result in substantial changes.

“Sex and relationship education,” the DCSF says, is to be taught as part of the standard personal, social and health education (PSHE).

“The government is currently legislating to make PSHE compulsory and to lower the age at which parents can withdraw their children from PSHE from 19 to 15 years.”

In fact, the Labour government, in response to Britain having the highest rates of teen pregnancy of all EU countries, has been pressing for years to bring mandatory sex education into schools at all levels, down to kindergarten.

The Society for the Protection of Unborn Children (SPUC) is calling for concerned British citizens to contact their MPs to ask them to oppose the government’s sex-education bill that is set to go to the House of Commons for a vote February 23. The Children Schools and Families bill will, they said, force all state schools to provide sex and relationships education (SRE) for all primary and secondary school pupils.

According to the new guidance, this mandatory curriculum will include “signposting” and links to abortion and other anti-life/anti-family services in schools, including faith schools.

To contact the Catholic Education Service:

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Phone: (00 44) (0) 207 901 1900

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