Sex education to be introduced in Russian schools starting from September 1, 2019

24.08.2019, Moscow.

A new subject, “Psychology,” which will include psychology, fundamentals of health and safety, and sex education, will be introduced in a pilot format in Russian schools starting from September 1, 2019, Chief Psychiatrist of the Ministry of Health and Director of the Serbsky Center for Social and Forensic Psychiatry Zurab Kekelidze said, Daily Storm reports on August 22.

Psychology will be taught from grades 3 through 11. Children in elementary school will learn about the harm of “weed” and later about problems of adolescence and problems of community life.

The minister of education and the minister of health have approved the psychology textbooks for schools. According to Kekelidze, Minister of Health Veronika Skvortsova and Minister of Education Olga Vasilyeva personally participated in discussions at the phase of preparation.

Irina Volynets, Chairperson of the National Parents’ Committee social movement, said she was unaware of the experiment and the program, but she knows that the overwhelming majority of parents are against early sex education. “Most of the parents are totally against this as a mandatory practice; it should be optional so that parents can decide,” the NPC leader added.

Sex education experiments in Russia began as part of the “Family Planning” program in 1994. In 1997, sex education was excluded in the school curriculum because of criticism in the media and public disagreement.

The promotion of sexual education in schools is strongly impeded by amendments to the law “On Protection of Children from Information Harmful to Their Health and Development,” which has been in effect in Russia since 2012.

In April 2012, Russia’s State Duma ratified the Optional Protocol to the Convention on the Rights of the Child as well as the Convention on the Protection of Children against Sexual Exploitation and Sexual Abuse. Both documents require the introduction of sex education in schools.

According to an AKSIO survey carried out in April 2012, when asked about including mandatory sexual education in the school curriculum, 41.3% of respondents said they were “totally against”, 35.1% were “uncertain”, 22.1% “totally agreed”, and 1.6% gave no answer.

Source: Rossa Primavera News Agency

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