Parents protest at Isle of Dogs school over sex lessons in class

Antonia Tully speaking at Whitechapel rally in 2012 against primary school 'compulsory' sex educatio

Antonia Tully speaking at Whitechapel rally in 2012 against primary school 'compulsory' sex education - Credit: Archant

Angry parents are protesting outside their children’s school later today while the youngsters are inside having a science lesson where it’s claimed they’re being taught about sex.

The parents have opted out of their youngsters being given sex education.

But they claim some schools in London’s East End are bypassing the parental option by including it in compulsory science lessons under the National Curriculum.

So the campaigners are gathering outside Millwall’s Arnhem Wharf Primary on the Isle of Dogs while the science lesson gets under way at 2pm.

It’s part of a national ‘Safe at School’ campaign started by Antonia Tully who organised a series of public protest meetings in east London last year.

“Parents are being denied their legal right to protect their children from unacceptable sex education,” she said. “Teaching children about sex in science lessons is compulsory sex education by the back door.

“Parents are angry because the inclusion of the word ‘reproduction’ in the science curriculum is seen as a green light by teachers to transfer explicit teaching about sex to science lessons.”

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The parents are also sending a 1,000-word open letter to head teacher Sara Haynes, Tower Hamlets Mayor Lutfur Rahman and the Town Hall’s education director Anne Canning, claiming that the school is including explicit information about sexual organs and intercourse in the science class.

They consider talking about such sensitive issues are for parents, not the school.

The science curriculum for primary schools is vague and teachers are interpreting it to mean they can and must teach children about sex, the letter points out.

There is growing concern by parents, it adds, that the curriculum is taking away their right “to protect children from sex education.”

They fear Tower Hamlets council is slipping in sex education as part of statutory National Curriculum.