Internet porn prompts review of Brighton and Hove sex education guidance

Posted On 13 Mar 2014 at 12:28 pm

A Brighton and Hove secondary school teacher estimated last week that almost all 15 and 16-year-old boys would have porn or other inappropriate pictures on their phones.

And most girls of the same age would – at the very least – have been sent material that they wouldn’t want to show their parents.

It’s not just internet porn though. Sexting – sending explicit photos by text message – and cyber-bullying are widespread enough to have prompted the Prime Minister David Cameron to speak out.

Now members of Brighton and Hove City Council are being asked to help tackle a situation that did not exist when they were at school.

At a meeting of the council’s Children and Young People Committee on Monday (10 March) they were asked to support a review of local sex education guidance which was issued in 2003.

It predates the first 3G phones – those with video – in 2004 and the addition of the word sexting to the Oxford English Dictionary in 2011.

A report to councillors said that the context of the review was “the high profile being given to the subject nationally in supporting children and young people to understand concepts such as consent and develop the skills to keep themselves safe and develop healthy relationships which are free from violence and exploitation”.

Also, PHSE (personal, social and health education) will no longer form part of the national curriculum from September.

Most 14 to 16-year-old children in Brighton and Hove – 80 per cent – are not having sex, according to a local survey in 2012.

And more than half of those who are having sex said that they knew where to get free condoms, chlamydia tests and morning-after pills.

Teenage pregnancy rates and levels of sexual infection locally are high.

The report said: “At school level the variations in this data set reflect the model and quality of delivery.

“In schools where there is tutor delivery of relationships and sex education, knowledge of services is lower.

“In schools where PSHE has high status (and) is delivered by specialist teachers as part of the curriculum, outcomes are improved.

“National recognition has also been given to resources produced in Brighton and Hove including Fantasy vs Reality, a resource produced in 2009 to support teaching about pornography.”

Fantasy vs Reality cites a Home Office study, Sexualisation of Young People Review, saying: “Children and young people are exposed to an unprecedented range of media content, through an ever-growing number of channels and websites.

“Furthermore, the proportion of that content which is sexual or even pornographic is increasing at a dramatic rate.”

The review said: “Teachers, health practitioners, youth workers, parents, local authorities and the government all report concerns regarding young people’s health and emotional well-being in relation to attitudes and values to sex, sexual expectations, safer sex, relationships, body image, self-esteem and internet use.

“For example, there are concerns about young teens posting sexually explicit images of themselves on web pages.

“Not all young people watch pornography, but many do, and the attitudes and values of pornography are becoming ‘normalised’ and therefore potentially impact on all children and young people.”

Fantasy vs Reality also said: “No pornography will be shown in the teaching of this resource.

“However, in order to illustrate positive messages about the range of ‘normal’ body shapes and sizes to counteract those in the media, teachers may choose to show photographs of sexual organs as suggested in this resource.

“In addition students are encouraged to explore attitudes to sex and relationships that are portrayed in pornography.

“This resource therefore contains potentially sensitive material.”

Councillors are expected to take another look at the subject at some point during the autumn term.

  1. Jack Jones Reply

    Many adults will have content on their phones that they wouldn’t want to show their parents. No big deal. Erotic content is a natural part of growing up. You won’t find people in A&E because they watched too much porn. But if you want to both educate kids, and warn them of harm, tell them of the dangers of alcohol and tobacco, vices that kill hundreds of thousands of people every year.

  2. Jack Jones Reply

    Many adults will have content on their phones that they wouldn’t want to show their parents. No big deal. Erotic content is a natural part of growing up. You won’t find people in A&E because they watched too much porn. But if you want to both educate kids, and warn them of harm, tell them of the dangers of alcohol and tobacco, vices that kill hundreds of thousands of people every year.

  3. Mr Smith Reply

    You won’t find people in A&E because they watched too much porn. i dont know if they might end up traumatised and in some psycho ward ?? .. the other thing i did know is that in A & E they have a lot of guys arrive with ring spanner attached firmly on part of the body… its something sounds funny but it cost a lot of time and CARE to cut the thing off YES i mean the ring spanner SO guys no testing that out please.. a lot of blood flow can soon case lots of embarrassing pain ..

  4. Mr Smith Reply

    You won’t find people in A&E because they watched too much porn. i dont know if they might end up traumatised and in some psycho ward ?? .. the other thing i did know is that in A & E they have a lot of guys arrive with ring spanner attached firmly on part of the body… its something sounds funny but it cost a lot of time and CARE to cut the thing off YES i mean the ring spanner SO guys no testing that out please.. a lot of blood flow can soon case lots of embarrassing pain ..

  5. Mr Smith Reply

    You won’t find people in A&E because they watched too much porn. i dont know if they might end up traumatised and in some psycho ward ?? .. the other thing i did know is that in A & E they have a lot of guys arrive with ring spanner attached firmly on part of the body… its something sounds funny but it cost a lot of time and CARE to cut the thing off YES i mean the ring spanner SO guys no testing that out please.. a lot of blood flow can soon case lots of embarrassing pain ..

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