Third of West Midlands teachers do not feel confident teaching sex and relationships - survey reveals - The Solihull Observer

Third of West Midlands teachers do not feel confident teaching sex and relationships - survey reveals

Solihull Editorial 4th Oct, 2022   0

MORE than a third of secondary school teachers in the West Midlands said they do not feel confident about teaching sex and relationships education, a new poll has revealed.

The findings, following a survey carried out by teaching union NASUWT and children’s charity NSPCC, come just a year after the compulsory curriculum came into effect in England.

The survey saw 1,034 secondary school teachers in the UK respond, including 106 in the West Midlands.

The survey also revealed over a quarter of teachers in the region (26%), don’t feel confident answering difficult or sensitive questions in lessons.

In the West Midlands, 88% felt they needed more resources, 85% felt they needed more training, while 56% felt government support had been poor.

To support teachers, the NSPCC is today launching its new UK-wide service called Talk Relationships.

The charity has developed an online e-learning course, which is free for a limited time, and 14 lesson plans developed in partnership with the PSHE Association.

The eLearning service aims to increase teacher confidence in areas such as responding to safeguarding concerns in a classroom setting, managing challenging questions from young people and leading inclusive discussions.

The charity is also launching a dedicated helpline, where NSPCC experts will offer help and advice to any teacher with a question or safeguarding concern.

Dr Patrick Roach, NASUWT General Secretary, said: “The NASUWT has campaigned for PSHE and SRE to be key elements within all initial teacher training routes and continuing professional development packages.

“However, it is evident from the findings of our joint survey that many teachers do not currently feel they are being equipped with the tools or time they need to be able to teach about these sensitive topics confidently.

“Teachers cannot provide pupils with the guidance and information they need if they are not themselves given ongoing access to pedagogical and practical training and advice.

“The Talk Relationships service will provide a valuable package of support for teachers, but the new Secretary of State must also step up to the plate by ensuring access to comprehensive training for teachers and ensuring that every school can benefit from specialist external sources of direct support and expertise.”

To sign up to access the Talk Relationship’s e-learning course and lesson plans teachers can click here.

To get in touch with the dedicated Talk Relationships helpline teachers can call 0800 389 5347 between 8am and 10pm Monday to Friday and 9am to 6pm on Saturday and Sunday.

Alternatively, they can email [email protected] with ‘Talk Relationships’ in the subject line.

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