The Children and Social Work Act (2017) places a duty on the Secretary of State to make relationships education mandatory in all primary schools, and relationships and sex education mandatory in all secondary schools, in England.
The Government also made a commitment to ensuring that the updated guidance and regulations for these subjects would be age appropriate and support the knowledge children and young people need to stay safe and to develop positive relationships.
The Department for Education intends to conduct thorough and wide ranging engagement on relationships education and relationships and sex education. This will determine the content of the regulations and statutory guidance, covering subject content, school practice and quality of delivery. The Department will seek evidence from schools and teachers; parents and pupils; experts in safeguarding and child wellbeing; subject experts; voluntary organisations and other interested parties; and other Government departments and public sector bodies. We will set out more details about the engagement process shortly and the work to consider age appropriate subject content. This work will result in draft regulations and guidance on which we will consult. Following consultation, regulations will be laid in the House allowing for a full and considered debate.