It is not just the politicians, campaigners or even parents who are divided over sex education and abstinence: schools too have completely different approaches on how to go about this issue.
At St Peter’s – a Catholic school in Bournemouth – sex education is a part of religious education, which is often the case with most of the catholic and other religious schools. The school has their own programme, such as talking about puberty in year seven and about physical and emotional changes in year eight and nine.
According to Gregory Hogan, the school’s Religious Education teacher, they do talk about the possibility of abortions and sexually transmitted diseases but everything is guided by the Catholic Church’s stance on relationships.
“We look at the Christian understanding of sex inside marriages as proper place of sexual activity and open (sic) this to children as well,” he says.
Sex outside marriage is considered as a mortal sin by the Catholic Church alongside artificial contraceptive methods and abortions but natural family planning methods are permissible.
Watch: A Tale of Two Schools
Portchester School, an all boys school in Bournemouth, runs a SexEd day for year 10, where boys are shown how to use a condom.
Len Idle, the Assistant Headteacher says: “We are an all boys school and so are keen to challenge some common perceptions, sometimes reinforced by cultural or ethnic issues. Our boys are equal partners. We have to challenge stereotypes about men, women and relationships.
But Lisa Cousins, Bournemouth Teenage Pregnancy Strategy Coordinator, hopes that a uniform sex education policy for schools is implemented. She says that although sex and relationship education is statutory at secondary level in England but the schools are autonomous to decide the duration, extent the kind of curriculum they want.