adidas gazelles womens Academies and free schools blamed for rise in teenage pregnancies

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All secondary schools in the town, and all but nine primaries, have broken free from the town hall, encouraged by the Government which argues standards will rise.

“Anecdotally, there is some feeling that the reduction in SRE teaching since schools received academy status is a factor.”

Watchdog Ofsted has raised the alarm over poor sex education in one in three schools, leaving pupils vulnerable to sexual exploitation and pressures from online pornography.

But, last year, the Government defeated a Labour amendment which attempted to make SRE compulsory partly over autonomy for ‘free schools’ and academies.

The education select committee is exploring whether Personal, Social, Health and Economic education (PSHE) including Sex and Relationships Education (SRE) should be statutory in schools.

In its evidence, Darlington Borough Council said its support for the switch was echoed by “staff in health, education and youth services”.

The council wrote: “Whilst topics such as contraception, puberty, STIs and abortion are referenced, pornography and sexting are not and there is little mention of internet safety.

Meanwhile, schools in ‘special measures’ and under huge pressure to improve quickly found it difficult to find the time for sex and relationships education.
adidas gazelles womens Academies and free schools blamed for rise in teenage pregnancies