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Sex and the nitty-gritty

Who went?

Sarah Greaves, a PSHE co-ordinator at Stratford School in east London.

What course?

Teaching Sex and Relationship Education (SRE) in the Secondary School, which was run by the Credon Centre, Newham, east London.

What did it do?

The emphasis was on developing interactive lessons which get children to think for themselves.

Why go?

Our school is culturally mixed, which makes teaching sex education more difficult because you have to take the pupils' different religious attitudes into consideration.

Message, motto or mantra The key to good sex education is finding out what level of knowledge pupils already have. Be sensitive to the attitudes of everyone in the class and don't be too gung-ho about it.

Something I liked When we discussed issues such as teenage pregnancy, we looked at local statistics. It's important to know the picture in your area.

Something I learned I hadn't realised there was so much support available. We now work closely with a number of outside organisations.

Has it made a difference?

As teachers build up positive relationships with their classes, pupils become more trusting and more willing to talk openly.

The verdict?

It can be intimidating for a female teacher to show a group of boys how to use a condom but the course gave me confidence. I don't worry about anything any more

Coming soon

The next training days at the Credon Centre are in September (020 8548 5001). You could also try the Family Planning Association, which runs SRE courses around the UK. www.fpa.org.uk

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