Yes, indeed it is not easy to talk about sex especially to a six-year-old but it is high time we outgrew the inhibition and became open to our children. The world is crazy! Gone are the days when the old were meant to protect the young. today they are a threat!
Parents shouldnâ€™t consider discussing sex education a taboo because if our children are left alone they will learn much more from their peers. Sex education addresses the meaning of human sexuality, relationships, growth and development, relevant personal and social skills. Parents are in law and in fact the primary educators and home is the natural setting for sex education to take place.
Parents should please allow the schools help with our childrenâ€™s moral behaviour. We should trust the Ministry of Education which has come up with a well set programme and the teachers to effectively carry it out.Purpel and Ryan (1967) have this to say: â€œThe schools simply cannot avoid being involved in the moral life of the students.
It is inconceivable for the schools to take the child for six to seven hours a day, for 180 days a year, from the time he is six to the time he is 18, and not affect the way he thinks about moral issues and the way he behaves.â€ It is also unfortunate that many of the students at school are orphans and lack home training.
They are solely looking upon the school to answer their health related questions. It has been observed that students who lack this education tend to be social misfits and develop wrong attitudes about sex and sexuality, lose self-esteem hence engage in ill-health behaviour. Research says affirms that sex education supports the personal development, health and well-being of young people and helps them create and maintain supportive relationships.
In Ugandan schools, sex education has been approached by the top to bottom methods where the old believe they know what the young wish to know about sexuality issues but research believes a combination of both top-to-bottom and bottom-up yield better results.
People are motivated to learn about what they are interested in, what they feel they need to know, and what is relevant to their own personal experiences (Morton et al (1984) Let us empower the young and give them a chance to talk about their sexuality. All the serious work seems to be at primary level.
I feel it is also very crucial at secondary level where romantic relationships become increasingly important to many.
For many young people, it is not a pleasant time because it is characterised by many physical changes.
Most adolescents reach physical maturity and attain puberty whereby sexuality and sexual desire usually begins to appear. It is at this stage that all the knowledge obtained from their sex education sessions either at home or school would be of great benefit. Adolescence, if well guided through, can be a wonderful time.
Judith Namara Atuhaire
Sex education is essential in schools