Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Is sex education the responsibility of school or parents?

Key words: ‘Is …?’, ‘sex education’, ‘responsibility’, ‘school/parents’.

Sex education is undoubtedly important. However, who can better impart this education to children, either school or parents, is not clear-cut. While parents are best suited to guide the children at home, the teachers take on hold of them at school. So, in true sense it is a responsibility of both teachers and parents. However, because of various reasons such as embarrassment, knowledge level and cultural differences, among other reasons, school is better suited to impart sex education.

It is odd and difficult for parents to initiate dialogue on sexual matters with their children. First of all, both the parents and children encounter embarrassment when discussing such matters. Secondly, parents need to decide what time is appropriate to initiate such dialogue, which is again another difficult thing to do. Because children normally don’t confide their sexual curiosities, as well as activities, with their parents, the parents have a difficult time figuring out the right time to discuss on such issues. However, there is no embarrassment when they are given sexual education along with their peers in schools. They will take is as a customary part of education. Therefore, if school is given this responsibility it is in a better and safer position to impart sexual education.

Similarly, teachers can have more knowledge on this field and therefore, can give better guidance than parents. With formal education, a curriculum can be designed through extensive research on what specific things to teach and to which level of student. Based upon this researched curriculum, the students can be given sexual education in a more effective manner. Similarly, if children have queries, they can be better handled by teachers. Teachers, who are specialized in this field, can provide more convincing answers to the queries of the children, and thus satisfy their curiosities.

Again the parent child relationship differs from culture to culture. However, the same cannot be said about teacher and student relationship. Even though, it differs from place to place, the teachers and students don’t need to be constrained by cultural barriers. With their knowledge they can cross such boundaries and open up to what is relatively good and appropriate, rather than what is customary and expected.

Although parents are discussed above as less-informative, conservative, and traditional, there is no need to be so. Educated parents of 21st century can be equally competent in discharging sexual knowledge. So, despite school plays a major role, the parents should not stay with their arms closed. Although schools in general may provide good education, there are chances that some schools take this responsibility carelessly and unaccountably. Therefore, parents should ensure that their children have got robust sex education, so that they don’t take wrong steps later on. If they feel like their children have not received quality sex education, they should not hesitate to impart it themselves, if they are capable. After all, the ultimate benefits or disadvantages of imparting good or bad education will go to the parents.

In short, sex education is a sensitive issue and it requires due care during dissemination. Although school is better suited to impart it when considering many facets, we should not undermine the fact that all schools may not be equally enthusiastic, capable, and serious in this matter. This is when the parents have to automatically play a greater role in this issue. This is necessary because they are the ultimate responsible persons in this regard.

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