Catholic educators condemn ‘sinister’ sexual-health plans

Catholic educators are at loggerheads with NHS officials over “sinister” plans to open sexual-health centres in or near schools.

Health promotion bodies fear that if pupils cannot get accurate information about sex and relationships they will be susceptible to sexually transmitted infections (STIs), unplanned pregnancies and domestic abuse.

But the body representing Catholic schools has denounced the “underhand” plan, saying it is in “direct opposition” to parents’ wishes.

The proposed drop-in centres – which already exist in some schools – are one of the most controversial aspects of the Scottish government’s imminent Pregnancy and Parenthood in Young People Strategy.

In an official submission to a consultation on the strategy, the Scottish Catholic Education Service said that it was not necessary for schools to combine RSHPE (relationships, sexual health and parenthood education) with sexual health services such as contraception and access to abortion.

It adds: “We find it sinister that this draft strategy proposes that sexual health service drop-in centres should be situated ‘in or close to’ schools.”

This is an edited article from the 26 February edition of TESS. Subscribers can read the full article here. This week’s TESS magazine is available in all good newsagents. To download the digital edition, Android users can click here and iOS users can click here

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