2008-07-09 05:56:55 GMT 2008-07-09 13:56:55 (Beijing Time) China Daily
Two leading sexual health charities in the UK are advocating a controversial change to the nation's sexual education curriculum.
Simon Blake, chief executive of the Brook charity organization, says: "All the evidence shows that if you start sex and relationships education early - before children start puberty, before they feel sexual attraction - they start having sex later. They are much more likely to use contraception and practice safe sex."
Blake also says: "If we get high-quality sex and relationships education in every primary and secondary school across the UK, all the evidence shows teenage pregnancy rates will continue to fall and we will improve young people's sexual health."
He wants every primary and secondary school in the UK to provide a preliminary form of sex and relationship education to pupils.
At the moment, Blake says he is worried that "another generation of children and young people do not get the education they need to form healthy relationships and protect their sexual health."
The UK Department for Children, Schools and Families issued new draft guidance on wellbeing education in schools on Friday.
The Sex Education Forum, the national authority on sex and relationships teaching, called for personal, social, health and economic education, which includes sex and relationships.
Julie Bentley, chief executive of the Family Planning Association, another UK charity, says: "This is not about teaching 4-year-olds how to have sex ... it's like maths - in primary school children learn the basics, so that they can understand more and more complex concepts at a later stage."
She adds: "Parents are concerned that if students are told about sex they will go straight out and have it, but the research shows the complete opposite. They have sex later and when they do, they have safer sex."