Girls share how awful sex education was at their schools


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Girls share how awful sex education was at their schools

‘My Catholic school told us sex before marriage was like selling an apple with a bite taken out of it’

This week parliament quietly voted against a piece of legislation which would have ensured all schools in the UK would have compulsory sex education and relationship education. Campaigners had said the bill was “vital” in keeping young people safe, and three quarters of all students supported the introduction of compulsory sex ed, but sadly it wasn’t to be.

Currently in Britain only state schools are obliged to give compulsory sex ed lessons, and those only cover the biological aspects of sex. At my Catholic all-girls school, we never had an open, honest conversation about safe sex, how to know you’re ready, and that it was OK to have it and enjoy it. Once, a religion teacher took a class where she put us in a circle and put sellotape on one girl’s arm. “This is you and your boyfriend having sex, you’re really in love” she said, before ripping it off and showing us the dead skin cells left behind.

“Now he decides to have sex with this person instead”. She pressed it on several people and held it up to the light, showing us the skin and hair left on the sticky plastic so we’d all recoil in horror at how gross casual sex was. I asked other people who went to private or religious schools to share their awful sex education stories, and they were just as bad.

If this is really all we’re going on as teenagers, then we really need that bill.


I’ll never forget the time they made everyone watch a video on erections and then made the girls go to another classroom to learn about periods. No really, that was it. That was the whole thing.


I went to a state school and we had one day during my whole time at secondary school dedicated to sex education. I didn’t go to it because I knew you could skive off it easily, but after that we never had a sex education class again. I genuinely couldn’t tell you how to put a condom on if you asked me.

To conclude – there shouldnt be just one day dedicated to it, it should be repeated, especially as you get older.


I went to a Catholic school and sex ed was only anatomical and what was on the Year 9 Biology syllabus.


We had less of a sex education, more a day of workshops telling us why we should wait until we were responsible (married to a man!) to have children, as well as the basics periods and stuff as the bio syllabus. It didn’t send out a great message. 


We all sat sex ed classes separately, and in the boys class we took a test on anatomy and different functions in the body and stuff like that. Weirdly we all got really high marks – all over 90 per cent – even though when we checked a lot of the answers they were all different and weren’t right. People made jokes about what the teacher might have been doing while marking, but I think he was probably making us feel better about not knowing what a vulva is.


I went to a Catholic school for three years then left because of how much I hated it. We had a one hour lesson in Year 9 on sex ed and that was it. I can’t even remember much of it, but it was basically like don’t have sex unless you’re in love. Which was ironic considering bearing in mind this school didn’t let us raise money for children in need because it ‘contributes to abortions and abortion is murder’. Glad I left when I did.


I went to a catholic school and we had a ‘relationships day’ in year 11 where couples came in and told us how to have meaningful relationships. Really.


I went to a private school and they separated out the boys and the girls and they gave us plastic bags with pads and tampons (was odd) and showed us a bunch of videos (I was in year six at the time and loads of parents freaked out). At my secondary school we didn’t have any sex ed so they taught us a policy of abstinence which was kind of not spoken about but they were pushy and strange about sex.

However, as it was a boarding school, a lot of stuff was left up to the housemasters/mistresses. My HM organised us self defence classes and protection seminars which was actually really good, but on a whole the school did very little which is why one of my friends asked at age 16 if you could get pregnant through anal sex. There should be more dialogue between sexes.


I went to an all girls boarding school and we were taught a lot about the internal biology of men and women but not really anything else to do with sex, except one lesson dedicated to contraception where the teacher skimmed through it all without explaining how to get it. She demonstrated using a femidom and couldn’t get it in so just pulled it through the other side of the model vagina and was just like “you get the picture”.


My school wouldn’t tell us what sex was only how a baby was born. I didn’t really learn what sex was till Year 9 at school when I moved to a c.o.e school. I got taught about puberty in primary but it was prepping our body for babies that was all (no mention of sex) our sex ed video was a Disney education brand video.

I think I developed a stigma with sex till I was 19 because I knew so little about it. My own parents weren’t even bothered if I did it


I went to a private Catholic school and we went on a school trip to Lourdes, where it was explained to us that having sex before marriage is like trying to sell an apple with a bite taken out of it.


I went to an all-girls private catholic school, where sex ed was essentially “don’t have sex or Jesus will hate you and you’ll get STDs and die”. We had lessons where my female teacher pretended to be a boy, and would come on to us, and we’d have to tell them “no” in order to save our purity. We also had an entire class dedicated to an STD PowerPoint, where all she did was pull up nasty pictures and explain how sex should only be saved until marriage because then you won’t get diseases. They also equated receiving the Eucharist at church to a sexual relationship.


I went to Catholic school (middle school and high school) and sex ed was never even brushed upon. The only thing that was even close to it was watching “The Miracle of Life” in biology class. In senior year we had to make posters with horrible STD pictures in our religion class and post them around campus for everyone to see.