Human life is fundamentally based on sexuality. Children and young people
have a right to accurate, thorough, scientifically based information about it.
However, teaching about sexuality in schools is a touchy subject. Ever since it
was first introduced in European school curricula in the 1970's, parents,
religious leaders and politicians have been arguing, often in highly polarized
debates, about how much, and what should be taught at what age.
Over the past few decades, many Council of Europe member states have made
significant progress in providing this education and improving its content so
that it goes beyond biology and reproduction and truly teaches kids about their
bodies and their rights, as well as about gender equality, sexual orientation,
gender identity, and healthy relationships.
Sex, which is a deeply personal and taboo topic, must be understood as a
biological necessity. It is crucial that today's youngsters recognize it and
comprehend its importance in life. The consumption of porn, the sale of flesh
from rape victims, and other social ills that are just the results of unchecked
human phenomenal activity can be significantly reduced with effective sex
What is Sex Education?
Sex education consists of excellent instruction and learning on a wide range of
subjects connected to sex and sexuality. It examines values and beliefs around
those subjects and aids in the development of skills necessary for navigating
relationships with oneself, others, and the community as well as managing one's
own sexual health. Sex education can happen in classrooms, at home, in public
places, or online.
Parents are the primary and most important source of sex education. It also
covers broad topic like:
- Puberty, anatomy, sexual orientation, and gender identity as all aspects
of human development.
- Relationships with oneself, one's family, friends, and love partners as
well as with healthcare professionals.
- Personal abilities such as negotiating, decision-making, creating
boundaries, and communication.
- Sexual conduct encompasses the complete range of ways that humans choose
to be sexual beings or not.
- Sexually transmitted diseases, birth control, pregnancy, and abortion
are all aspects of sexual health.
- Society and culture, including media literacy, shame and stigma, and how
oppression, power, and identity affect sexual wellness and the right to
choose whether or not to have children.
Sexual Education and Myths
Campaigns have proliferated all throughout the continent, spreading
misinformation about the current sexuality education curricula. They have
portrayed sexuality education as sexualizing kids at a young age, disseminating
"gender ideology," "propaganda in favor of homosexuality," and denying parents
the freedom to teach their kids in accordance with their values and views. To
frighten parents, misinformation about the curriculum's true contents is
UNESCO has spelled out the aims of sexuality education as "teaching and learning
about the cognitive, emotional, physical and social aspects of sexuality. It
aims to equip children and young people with knowledge, skills, attitudes and
values that will empower them to: realize their health, well-being and dignity;
develop respectful social and sexual relationships; consider how their choices
affect their own well-being and that of others; and understand and ensure the
protection of their rights throughout their lives."
Goals of sex Education
Young people receive the knowledge and skills they need for lifetime sexual
health through sex education. They learn how to love themselves unconditionally,
develop healthy relationships, think critically about the world, make educated
sex decisions, and be a good ally to others who are disenfranchised. According
to research, inclusive and culturally sensitive sex education helps young people
acquire the social and emotional skills necessary to grow up to be kind and
Early and frequent exposure to this kind of sex education promotes respect for
sexual variety, reduces dating and intimate partner violence, fosters healthy
relationships, guards against child sex abuse, and boosts media literacy.
Additionally, it aids in preventing STDs and unplanned pregnancy among
teenagers. If you are unaware of the body's primary function, "reproduction,"
you run a lot of risks. Protecting adults and children from the risk of sexual
exploitation is also the main objective of sex education.
- Why Comprehensive sexual education is beneficial
- Comprehensive sexual education promotes social and emotional
competencies that contribute to academic achievement, reduced risk taking
and healthy relationship.
- Comprehensive sexuality education advances gender equity.
- Comprehensive sexuality education promotes healthy promotes, prevents
bullying and reduces risk of sexual assault and intimate partner violence.
- Comprehensive sexuality education results in fewer unplanned
- Comprehensive sexuality education lowers incidence of HIV and STDs.
State of sex education in India
In a nation like India with its rich cultural traditions and ethos, sexual
education for either youth or adults is frowned upon. According to a Ministry of
Women and Child Development report on child abuse in India, 53% of males and 47%
of girls surveyed had experienced sexual abuse. FLE may therefore assist the
impressionable young generation in becoming aware of their sexual rights and
enabling them to defend themselves against any sexual abuse, unwanted acts of
violence, and molestation.
The "family life education" (FLE) or sex education for youth and adults program
in India will assist men and women in urban and rural areas in understanding
their respective roles toward one another and in cultivating sexual awareness to
sustain healthy sexual lives. The program is challenging to implement because of
the shame associated with sexual issues in Indian society and the complexity of
cultural belief systems.
In India, where 50% of the 243 million people who live in metropolitan areas are
teenagers, this age group is the largest. With this significant amount of data
in a country, the figures and numbers can readily explain the need to address
the significance of sex education for young.
The most sensitive topic is believed to be sexual health, and in some regions
and localities, asking someone about their sexual health in public still causes
discomfort. Some people still believe that discussing private matters is
improper. And as a result of these problems, it becomes difficult for young
people who go through significant hormonal changes and go through physical and
mental development changes at the beginning of adulthood to talk about their
In the future, these unresolved problems can lead to a variety of harmful sexual
health outcomes in both men and women, as well as unsafe abortions, pregnancy,
and other sexually transmitted diseases that adults are unable to handle.
Importance of Sexual Education for men and women in Indian Society
Due to ongoing discomfort and reluctance to discuss sex with people in public,
Indian society still has an issue with sexual health. People treat sexual health
very casually as a result of this ignorance, which brings us back. Sex education
is crucial because it helps males and females comprehend the different changes
that their bodies go through after adolescence.
Why the Family Life Education is necessary (FLE):
- Increased rape cases.
- Increase in youth anxiety cases.
- Increase in cases of mental illness brought on by hormone imbalances.
- Excessive exposure to adult and pornographic content.
- An increase in junk food consumption and unhealthy eating patterns.
- A surge in juvenile drinking and smoking behaviors.
- Sensitivity to the LGBT community,
- A rise in divorce cases resulting from sexual issues,
- An increase in incidents of adultery between married couples as a result
of sexual unhappiness
Rights Of Children And Young People To Receive Comprehended Sexual Education
International human rights organizations have determined that, in accordance
with current international standards, children and young people have a right to
complete, accurate, scientifically sound, and culturally appropriate sexuality
education. These include the International Covenant on Economic, Social, and
Cultural Rights, the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child, the UN Convention
on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women, the UN
Convention on the Rights of the Child, the European Social Charter, and the
aforementioned Lanzarote and Istanbul Conventions.
The right to comprehensive sexuality education stems from a number of other
protected rights, including the right to be free from violence and
discrimination, the right to the best possible level of physical and mental
health, the right to information and the right to a quality education that is
both inclusive and human rights-focused.
The UN Special Rapporteur on the Right to Education emphasized that "sexual
education should be considered a right in itself and should be clearly linked
with other rights in accordance with the principle of the interdependence and
indivisibility of human rights" in a report on sexuality education from 2010. In
order to accomplish a number of the goals outlined in the UN's 2030 Agenda for
Sustainable Development, sexuality education is recognized as being essential.
Ways in which sexuality education can be improved:
- The teaching strategies and curricula should be modified to account for
the children's changing abilities and developmental phases.
- Sexual education needs to be made legal, compulsory, and ingrained
throughout the entire educational system starting in the early grades.
- Children should receive sexuality education that is current, grounded in
research, and respectful of their rights.
- In order to make sure that the education being provided to them is
relevant and tailored to their needs, it is crucial to consult with and
involve young people themselves.
- It is crucial to tell families accurately about what sexuality education
actually entails—and what it does not—as well as the advantages for
everyone, not just kids.
- Regardless of whether some of the teaching is also done by outside
actors, it is crucial that teachers receive adequate specialized training
and support for teaching comprehensive sexuality education.
- Children and teens who are not in school should also receive
comprehensive sexuality education.