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  • Writer's pictureLeah Jewett

Dutch sex ed for British parents: a panel discussion

Updated: Oct 21, 2019

Why are Dutch teenagers the happiest in the world? How do Dutch parents talk to their children about sex & relationships? And what happened when YouTuber Mimi Missfit took a team of British teenagers to Holland on a sex-ed fact-finding mission for the BBC?

Dutch parents have open attitudes and a relaxed approach to talking with their children about sex and relationships. No wonder: the sex education on offer in the Netherlands is excellent.

For a dose of Dutch sex ed for British parents, come to the Outspoken Sex Ed panel discussion on 12 November at 6.45pm in the Conway Hall, Red Lion Square, London WC1R 4RL

How do we know that Dutch sex education is the best in the world?

  1. Relationships and sex education has been compulsory in all schools from primary age upwards as of 2012. Dutch sex ed is sex-positive and emphasises diversity, safer sex and communication. The internationally renowned Rutgers institute has developed a holistic relationships and sex education curriculum which it exports around the world

  2. The Netherlands have the lowest teen pregnancy rates in Europe and low teen abortion rates. Under-25s account for only 10% of STIs

  3. A 2013 Unicef report labelled Dutch children the happiest in the world (with a score of 8.4 out of 10) and Dutch kids topped the wellbeing charts in 2017

  4. Dutch teenagers tend to have delayed, and pleasurable, first-time sex

  5. Holland is one of the world’s most gender-equal countries

Our panel will give you Netherlands-knowledge insight on how to talk openly at home…

  • BBC series Mimi On A Mission: Sex Ed producer IDA BRUUSGAARD

  • primary-school relationships and sex education teacher JONNY HUNT

  • Amsterdam-based journalist MARK SMITH

Plus watch excerpts from the entertaining BBC series Mimi On A Mission: Sex Ed!

Tickets £13 – including a glass of wine

Presented by Outspoken Sex Ed


JONNY HUNT is a sex education consultant. He works with children and young people from age four, writes educational packages and trains professionals. Jonny specialises in inclusive relationships and sex education (RSE) with a sex-positive approach. All About Me, the primary-school sex-education programme he developed and leads in Warwickshire, is inspired by Spring Fever, the annual Dutch relationships and sex-education programme. Believing that sex and relationships can be fun and empowering, Jonny feels privileged to help shape the views and expectations of children


IDA BRUUSGAARD is the executive producer of the BBC series Mimi On A Mission: Sex Ed and managing director of Peggy Pictures, which focuses on discovering young, diverse onscreen talent and telling factual-TV stories that reflect the lives of under-25s and that they would want to share with their peers. Originally from Norway, Ida won a gold medal at the International Broadcast Awards (New York Festival) for assistant-producing Dogs That Changed the World. She has also directed high-rating primetime programmes for Channel 4 (Sharon Horgan: How to be Married) and BBC1 (Heir Hunters, Village SOS). The second series of Mimi On A Mission, which is about mental health and happiness, will be released in spring 2020 @ibruusgaard

London-born, Amsterdam-based MARK SMITH is a freelance journalist and editor whose features about life in the Netherlands have seen him canoeing through canals and interviewing extremely tall people for titles including The Times, The Sunday Times, Observer Magazine and The Guardian. He has edited diverse titles including COS magazine, the Soho House members magazine and Time Out Amsterdam. In his March 2019 Times piece Why Dutch Youngsters Are The Worlds Happiest Teenagers, he profiled five adolescent locals and explored the Dutch concept that no question about bodies or emotions should be off limits. Mark co-parents a daughter with his husband and their best friend in Holland @amancalledmark

SOPHIE MANNING (chair) is an Outspoken Sex Ed director. She works with charities and social enterprises to maximise their impact on the world. Sophie began her career as a management consultant working with organisations large and small in youth work, social mobility and healthcare. Now the parent of two energetic young boys, Sophie has given her focus to educating children on the most important topics in life. She hopes each generation of parents can do better than the last, giving accurate and accessible information and helping children become whoever they want to be @Outspokensex_ed

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