Sex Education in Secondary Schools

Sex Education in Secondary Schools

Sex Education in Secondary Schools

Sex Education in Secondary Schools


• What are effective teaching and learning styles for sex education?

• How can the Health Promoting School create a context for sex education?

• How do we interpret the legislation for sex education?

This book will be important reading for secondary teachers of all disciplines. It provides a timely consolidation of educational thinking on sex education in schools today, including a consideration of the role of the Health Promoting School. It draws together recent research evidence to consider important aspects such as equal opportunities, school policy and practice, as well as identifying a moral and social framework for sex education.

The practical guidelines are particularly helpful for trainee and newly qualified teachers and provide strategies for introducing, developing and re-visiting key areas of sex education. Some aspects, such as abortion and AIDS education, are highly sensitive areas for teachers to take on, demanding a particular awareness of the surrounding issues and of what might and can be taught in their own school. Crucially they demand a level of self awareness and self confidence for teachers to embark on a variety of appropriate teaching and learning strategies. A range of individual and group activities are provided which are aimed at both beginning and more experienced teachers to stimulate independent learning.


In the UK, health education and, in turn, sex education have their own interesting social and cultural roots. As teachers you need to be aware of some of the often unspoken assumptions underlying health education programmes in schools today, and to have an awareness of the developments in health and sex education, together with their close associations with public health measures. It is important to note that the health education curriculum in the UK is not grounded in its own pedagogy, and this factor, in association with the many social, cultural and political influences over the years, has probably been a handicap to its becoming a high-status curriculum area or, indeed, a well respected academic discipline. There is a sense that the discipline itself moves in particular cycles, hugely influenced by the moral and political climates of the day.

Health, health promotion and health education

Tones and Tilford (1995) have described health education and health promotion as having a symbiotic relationship. Physical, socio-economic and cultural influences (which may be positive or negative) are engineered by health promotion strategies in order to increase the opportunities for health and the avoidance of disease or disability. Such social engineering may be at the level of altering the environment: for example, with the enforcement of no smoking areas in some public places, or the availability of funding to local councils for the creation of city cycleways. Tones and Tilford argue that health education can operate in several possible ways: one is to empower young people to make personal . . .

Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed


An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.