"The introduction to the draft document, which is due to be launched this year, says young people should be taught about consent before they are sexually active."
Imagine that. Being taught about consent before you are expected to be able to negotiate consent. Just brilliant. What other remarkable revelations did the BBC report?
"The government said it wanted to give young people a "better understanding of the society around them" so they could "make informed choices and stay safe".
What stroke of genius is this that figured young people could and would make better choices for themselves if they have a better understanding of what those choices are and how the world works? It's so simple and so much YES OF COURSE OBVIOUSLY!
And what about people who think that proper sex ed is what motivates young people to explore sexual relationships?
"recognizing that some young people will be sexually active before the age of 16 does not equate to encouraging underage sexual activity".
Really. Hats off to the British government! They've managed to take a grown up, sobering look at the landscape of sexual assault and predation of young people, respond in the most logical and appropriate way, and swat away irrational and fear-mongering detractors with sense and authority. Bravo!
We could stand to do a lot more of the same over here, where the numbers don't lie: the states with the highest rates of unplanned pregnancy are those that teach abstinence only sex education, and the states that have woken up to the proof in the pudding and instituted comprehensive sexual education have seen drops in rates of teen pregnancies. Imagine that.
And lessons we should be learning from our European neighbors doesn't end there. Mic.com is reporting that Denmark is progressing as usual ahead of the crowd right on over to teaching about pornography through showing it to high school students, recognizing the importance of porn literacy taught early and realistically.
"Christian Graugaard, a professor at Aalborg University, proposed introducing porn into public school sexual education during an interview with Danish public broadcaster DR. "Instead of having sex education be boring and technical, where you roll a condom onto a cucumber, I'd rather have us educate our children to be critical consumers who see porn with a certain distance and reflection," Graugaard said, according to the Local.
These efforts are not free from criticism; the understandable uproar from parents will be a hurdle, and others point out that some students may not have chosen to look at porn yet and wouldn't want to and shouldn't have to. All of these concerns should be taken into a look at how to teach porn literacy best, and make sure to include a necessary element of sex ed. We know that education is one of the most effective ways to help teens make better decisions regarding their sexual health, and we need to commit to providing them with comprehensive sexual education, despite so many efforts to the contrary.