Leading doctors have expressed their opinion that primary school children should be taught what it means to be lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender.
The Royal College of Paediatricians and Child Health is encouraging ministers to go further in their guidance on sex and relationship classes, which will become compulsory from 2020.
They say there needs to be a ‘clear statement’ that LGBT people and relationships are part of the teaching of healthy relationships.
The Department for Education said ‘schools are free to determine how they address LGBT specific content, but the Department recommends that it is integral throughout the programmes of study’.
However, senior doctors are now for the Government to be more upfront, saying that primary school children should be given clear information about different types of sexuality.
The Royal College says:
“There needs to be a clear statement that LGBT people and relationships are part of teaching about healthy relationships in primary school. ‘This can be demonstrated in relation to families – but also it is helpful to children to learn the meaning of terms such as lesbian, gay and bisexual.”
It added that any teaching should be ‘sensitive and age-appropriate’.
Dr Max Davie, the college’s officer for health promotion, told The Daily Telegraph:
“We need to talk to children like they are intelligent beings. They are curious. ‘My children know people who are gay or lesbian, it’s not that big a stretch to be talking to children about bisexuality.’
“Frank discussions about such matters would prevent ‘sniggering’ at the back.
“This is about giving things their proper names and demystifiying them. There is nothing mysterious or shameful about it, it’s not about promoting LGBT as superior to anything else, it’s just setting out the facts.”
The Department of Education will now consider the matter with a full debate due to take place by next June.
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