Information, guidance, and teaching resources about relationships and sexual health in schools.
These resources may help if you're completing one of our healthy schools awards.
Overview of relationships and sexual health
Schools have a role in teaching about, and signposting to services for, sexual health and relationships. Teaching about relationships and sexual health will typically be part of Relationships and Sex Education (RSE) and PSHE.
Children and young people need good quality RSE in schools in order to:
- stay safe
- understand how their bodies work, including understanding puberty
- take responsibility for their sexual health
- form healthy and fulfilled relationships later in life
From September 2019, Relationship Education in primary schools and RSE in secondary schools will become mandatory.
Young people also need signposting to services relating to their sexual health needs. Schools can do this by promoting local services.
All young people should:
- be able to get confidential advice and support about relationships and sexual health
- feel comfortable asking for help
The positive impact of Relationships and Sex Education
According to the Sex Education Forum Go to https://www.sexeducationforum.org.uk/resources/evidence/relationships-and-sex-education-evidence (opens new window), national and international research shows that good quality RSE protects young people.
There's no evidence to suggest that offering young people RSE will encourage them to have their first experience of sex earlier.
In fact, young people who have had good RSE and easy access to services are more likely to:
- choose to have sex for the first time when they're older
- use contraception to protect themselves from STDs and unplanned pregnancies
Furthermore, RSE aims to raise awareness of the law, reduce harmful and abusive behaviours and teach about consent.
Sexual health services for young people
It's important that teachers and support staff can tell young people where and how to access confidential sexual health services.
This may include:
- on site sexual health services offered by school nurses and Brook, the sexual health and wellbeing charity Go to https://www.brook.org.uk/find-a-service/regions/bristol (opens new window)
- young people's clinics offered by Unity Sexual Health Go to https://www.unitysexualhealth.co.uk/ (opens new window)
- advice and services from their GP practice and at pharmacies
Relationships and sex education resources and information
Brook offers free Relationships and Sex Education (RSE) accessing Sexual Health Services assemblies to young people, and free professionals training through Unity Sexual Health. They're also able to deliver RSE sessions and workshops on a large range of topics.
Unity Sexual Health Go to https://www.unitysexualhealth.co.uk/ (opens new window) has information on sexual health services in Bristol, confidential advice to young people, resources for professionals, and a list of the school drop-ins.
FPA, the sexual health charity Go to http://www.fpa.org.uk/ (opens new window) has advice on sexual health, sex and relationships, including free downloadable RSE resources.
Sex Education Forum has useful guidance and resources for schools including Three steps to RSHE success and latest research evidence relating to relationships and sex education (RSE).
Find more information on our PSHE page.