School alert on teenage mums

19th February 1999 at 00:00
MINISTERS want tough action on teenage pregnancies, smoking and drinking among 12-15s and poor dental standards in children aged under five.

Only one in three teenagers takes regular vigorous exercise at least four times a week and this should be raised to one in two within 10 years under targets for a healthier Scotland spelt out in the White Paper on health.

The strategy emphasises, published on Wednesday, the importance of the pound;26 million programme for 60 new community schools as education is handed a central role in countering the country's poor health record.

Families with children are a special target and ministers say much has already been done to improve educational opportunities and life prospects. Pre-school education linked to accessible and affordable child care will lay the basis of better chances for disadvantaged families.

Smoking is among the key targets, but forthcoming research from Edinburgh University is likely to show ministers will have a tough job. Up to 24 per cent of 15-year-old girls smoke daily and 19 per cent of boys.

Other key aims are to cut teenage pregnancies among girls aged 13-15 by 20 per cent and ensure that 60 per cent of five-year-olds are free of dental disease. Surveys have shown that the poorest 10 per cent of children account for more than half of tooth decay.

Ministers want the Health Education Board for Scotland to establish a specialist schools unit and tackle the concerns highlighted in the paper. The concept of the health-promoting school is given an additional boost.

One of four key projects, billed as "test beds for action", will focus on teenagers' sexual behaviour. It will aim to cut teenage pregnancies and sexually transmitted diseases and encourage responsible attitudes to sex.

Subscribe to get access to the content on this page.

If you are already a Tes/ Tes Scotland subscriber please log in with your username or email address to get full access to our back issues, CPD library and membership plus page.

Not a subscriber? Find out more about our subscription offers.
Subscribe now
Existing subscriber?
Enter subscription number

Comments

The guide by your side – ensuring you are always up to date with the latest in education.

Get Tes magazine online and delivered to your door. Stay up to date with the latest research, teacher innovation and insight, plus classroom tips and techniques with a Tes magazine subscription.
With a Tes magazine subscription you get exclusive access to our CPD library. Including our New Teachers’ special for NQTS, Ed Tech, How to Get a Job, Trip Planner, Ed Biz Special and all Tes back issues.

Subscribe now