SRE amendments in the Children and Families Bill

SRE amendments to Children and Families Bill

Amendments to the Children & Families Bill that relate to sex and relationships education (SRE) go to the Lords for the report stage reading on 28 January 2014.

The amendments can be viewed on the Third Marshalled List of Amendments on the Parliament web-site. Scroll to '53'. Further amendments are on the Fourth Marshalled List.

Amendment 53 asks that the Secretary of State will, within six months of this Act coming into force, establish a working group to review and update the sex and relationship education guidance for schools.

The Sex Education Forum are supporting the amendment.  Brook, the Sex Education Forum, and the PSHE Association have already started developing supplementary advice to the statutory Sex and Relationships Education Guidance (0116/2000). However, we fully support the need for a full update of the government SRE guidance.  

We are also calling on peers to promote the need for further legislative change to ensure that SRE becomes a compulsory subject as part of statutory PSHE.

Amendment 53ZAAA (see Fourth Marshalled List) which would make SRE statutory has been the subject of media interest (27 January 2014) including a letter in the Times which opens:

 "Sir, Tomorrow the House of Lords considers a vital amendment to the Children & Families Bill which would require all state-funded schools in England to teach sex and relationships education (SRE). We call on peers across the benches to support this amendment as a critical child protection measure".

Signatories include Mumsnet, Women's Aid and the End Violence Against Women Coalition.

Amendment 53ZAAA defines SRE as including: "information about same-sex relationships, sexual violence, domestic violence and sexual consent."

Reading of the Bill begins in the Lords on 28 January 2014 afternoon (see 'What's On').