Published On: 24 March 2023Tags: , ,

Following recent headlines which have the potential to incite opposition to desperately needed Relationships, Sex, Health and Education (RSHE) in schools, we are part of a coalition of 54 organisations and experts in violence against women and girls that have written an open letter to the Secretary of State for Education, Gillian Keegan MP, calling on her to ensure the upcoming review of RSHE guidance is driven by what young people want and need.

Schools are an absolutely critical site for the protection of girls. They present the best opportunity to challenge the attitudes that condone abuse and transform the long-term likelihood of abuse in adult relationships. It is also vital that the impact of the intersecting inequalities which leave Black and minoritised women and girls more likely to experience violence and less able to access support, attention and justice is recognised. Deep reflection and proactive work are need to help women and girls be supported and advocated for.

RSHE is therefore critical and schools must be equipped and resourced to deliver quality education and hold space for young people’s learning. If the government is serious about fulfilling its commitment to tackling violence against women and girls, it is essential that the specialist VAWG sector has a central role in delivering RSHE.

Read the letter here.