The Catholic Church has welcomed the Government’s move to improve Relationship Education in primary schools, Relationship and Sex Education secondary schools and Health Education in all schools.
Catholic schools already perform high quality Relationship and Sex Education (RSE) and the Catholic sector is the only one with a model curriculum covering ages 3 -19.
The Catholic Church also welcomed the fact that the Government had used the Catholic model curriculum as examples of best practice.
Catholic education centres around the formation of the whole child, therefore the teaching of healthy relationships is an essential part of this.
Fundamental to Catholic belief is that parents are the primary educators of their children and the Government’s recommendations are clear that the right for parents right of withdrawal will be maintained.
Also welcomed was that schools with a religious character will continue to be able to approach Relationship and Sex Education within the tenants of their own faith.
The Most Rev Malcolm McMahon, Archbishop of Liverpool and Chair of the Catholic Education Service commented:
“Catholic schools already teach high quality and age-appropriate Relationship and Sex Education (RSE) and will continue to do so. Catholic education revolves around the formation of the whole child; RSE is key to this and we welcome the Government’s commitment to improving it in all schools.
“The reason why Catholic schools do RSE well, is because they teach it in full conjunction with parents who are the primary educators of their children. It is good to see that the Department for Education will continue to support parents and teachers to ensure that RSE provision in all schools will be of a high quality.”
Notes to editors
There are more than 2200 Catholic schools in England and Wales
RSE in Catholic schools is faithful to the Church's vision of human wholeness whilst recognising the contemporary context in which we live today. It provides a positive view of human sexuality and dignity of the human person and equips young people with the ability to make practical judgments about the right thing to do in particular circumstances. It is delivered in an age appropriate way and involves parents as they are the primary educators of their child.
The model Catholic curriculum and guidance can be found here: http://www.catholiceducation.org.uk/schools/relationship-sex-education