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Sex ed in the news 

Round-up from 2/1 to 21/1/18

Categories covered:









Calm Down Dear 2018 – a three-week festival of innovative feminist performance at Camden People’s Theatre from 15 January – 4 February Double bill ticket offer: two different shows on the same night for £16 

INCLUDES: • So Many Reasons – show about the influence our mothers have on how we understand the world, from the perspective of a first-generation British Ghanaian woman. Exploring cultural and generational shifts, religion and sexuality – phenomenal, bold performance by Racheal Ofori. 12 shows in January/February. Tickets £12
AND: • Your body is yours – blog post by Racheal Ofori on her show So Many Reasons 
AND: • Sexy – uses truthful wit and clever verse to explore our conflicted relationship with our bodies and sexiness, exploring our obsession with what is sexy through comedy, spoken word, dance and various states of undress. Presented by Vanessa Kisuule. Four shows in January/February. Tickets £12


Women’s March On London – the year anniversary of last year's worldwide event – held on 21 January from 11am to 1pm at Richmond Terrace, opposite Downing Street

AND: • Why London's Time’s Up Rally needs your support

AND: • Time’s Up Rally – Women’s March London


The psychology professor who came forward with her Harvey Weinstein story – Tomi-Ann Roberts researched the sexual objectification of women and girls

Children feel they are treated differently because of their gender, finds survey


Why gender stereotypes in kids’ shows are a really big deal





Don’t blame mental illness for mass shootings; blame men


Ask a Feminist: Michael Kimmel and Lisa Wade discuss toxic masculinity – 1-hour talk about “good man” vs “real man” vs good person, degendering traits, activism, violence etc (American but relevant)


Why gender equality is good for everyone — men included – 15-minute video of Michael Kimmel at TEDWomen 2015


The Duke of Cambridge supports CALM's #BestManProject | Heads Together – 5-minute video of men talking about friendship, depression, vulnerability etc including Rio Ferdinand


Masculinity: phone-in – Woman’s Hour on 3/1/18 (41 minutes)

Are our ideas of masculinity changing – and what are the consequences for us all? Has it ever been a more confusing time to be a man? We talk to listeners about what expectations they have of what it means to be a man. What is a man’s role in the family and in society? Are “manly men” being unfairly judged and looked down on? Is it harder or easier to “be a man” when roles are less constrained? What’s it like growing up as a young man now and what’s it like bringing up boys? 





G-Eazy ends H&M partnership over “disturbing”, “racially insensitive” ad


Emma Watson’s willingness to face the truth about race is refreshing

AND: • People called Emma a “white feminist”. Now, she admits, they weren’t wrong


Munroe Bergdorf: If I can get through 2017, I can do anything


Ava DuVernay on what gives her hope


Backtalk: Is it really Time’s Up in Hollywood? – podcast from Bitch Media with interesting race/diversity discussion around Golden Globes, Time’s Up, Oprah 2020 (start at around minute 23.25)


Sex education is failing to teach teenage girls about safe lesbian sex


In this comic, Batwoman is a baseball-playing lesbian superhero fighting fascism in the 1930s





Women urged to share sexual harassment experiences – Women and Equalities committee investigation via #StreetHarassment on Twitter until 5 March

AND: • The Women and Equalities Committee have launched a new inquiry into sexual harassment of women and girls in public places – committee chair Maria Miller MP on Woman’s Hour on 16/1/18, from minute 30.35 to 34.30

AND: • MPs launch inquiry to consider tougher laws on sexual harassment


Time’s Up campaign – The clock has run out on sexual assault, harassment and inequality in the workplace. It's time to do something about it

AND: • Time’s Up: women launch campaign to fight sexual harassment

AND: • No more silence, no more excuses – “Time’s Up,” say the women of Hollywood


“Here are the all-male nominees” – Natalie Portman slays the system


The unsettling spectacle of addressing abuse at Hollywood's “party of the year”


Catherine Deneuve defends men’s “right to hit on” women

AND: • Full translation of French anti-#MeToo manifesto signed by Catherine Deneuve
AND: • Cartoonists respond to the French open letter critical of the #MeToo movement
AND: • Thanks, Catherine Deneuve, for being brave enough to address the human rights issue of our time: men’s right to hit on women
AND: • Why did Catherine Deneuve and other prominent Frenchwomen denounce #MeToo?
AND: • Women strike back at Catherine Deneuve for slamming #MeToo movement

AND: • #Metoo or #Moi non plus? How French feminists are divided over Catherine Deneuve’s letter
AND: • Catherine Deneuve and others denounce the #MeToo Movement
AND: • Ladies, let’s be reasonable about #MeToo or nothing will ever be sexy again
AND: • Who lobotomised French women into a sordid collaboration with male sexual aggressors?
AND: • After the #MeToo backlash, an insider’s guide to French feminism

France's fight over sexual freedom
AND: • Mme Deneuve, whatever happened to female solidarity in France?
AND: • Has #MeToo gone too far, or not far enough? The answer is both
AND: • Catherine Deneuve apologises to sex attack victims after #MeToo controversy
AND: • Catherine Deneuve says sorry after defending men's right to “hit on women”


Greta Gerwig, Aaron Sorkin: Hollywood must change


Sharon Stone laughs and laughs and laughs when asked if she’s ever experienced harassment


Letter From the Editor: Stories for survivors of sexual misconduct


Trauma-informed reader response to the ill-informed article “Publicly We Say #MeToo. Privately We Have Misgivings”


I started the Media Men List. My name is Moira Donegan


When Middle Schoolers Say #MeToo – American piece

2017: WTF? – Late Night Woman’s Hour podcast from 201/12/17 – Lauren Laverne and guests share their take on 2017 events from #MeToo to Munroe Bergdorf and Wonder Woman


Oprah Winfrey Golden Globes Cecil B. DeMille award acceptance speech

AND: • Here’s the full transcript of Oprah’s inspirational Golden Globes speech

AND: • Oprah Winfrey’s truth is power at the post-Weinstein Golden Globes

Golden Globes 2018: People are wondering why more men weren’t asked about #MeToo and harassment


Amber Tamblyn: Redefining the red carpet


Outrage as ex-porn actress says some women “enjoy rape” during #MeToo discussion


Women should be happy if men try to hit on them, says Silvio Berlusconi





Eve Ensler: When a woman gives herself an orgasm, that’s a radical act – 20 years on from The Vagina Monologues


Why these women want to create Pussypedia, a free online guide to all things vagina – from 16/12/17
AND: • “Pussypedia” wants to be a complete online guide to vaginas – from 20/12/17


This artist photographed 500 women to expand beauty's “narrow image”


Want to be more than OK with your body? Then watch this film

AND: • My Body Says – the 3-minute video

AND: • I bared my body issues online and was trolled for it


Leonard Nimoy’s photographs of fat, naked women changed my life – from 3/3/15 by Lindy West


Here’s what it really looks like to be plus-size and pregnant 


Screw the scale: why I think the term “weight loss” needs to die


“The body positive movement is being commodified. It’s time to fight back” – from 12/17


A body confident future
Authors: British Youth Council Youth Select Committee
Format: Online report
Looks the impact body image has on the wellbeing of children and young people. Considers the extent, causes and consequences of body dissatisfaction among young people; social media and body image; the role of schools in promoting positive body image; and health and body image. Makes recommendations to government including: commissioning research to address gaps in the evidence base, including on poor body image in pre-adolescents, the link between poor body image and risky behaviours, and the long term impact of poor body image on young people; developing resources to support the challenges faced by young men, LGBT+ youth, ethnic minorities, and those with disabilities or serious illnesses; and establishing an annual National Body Confidence week as a focus for body-image activities.
Publication details: London: British Youth Council, 2017
Go to publication 


One dad’s journey through first periods


The Bollywood film breaking the taboo around periods


Written question in Parliament about periods: What support does the government provide to schools to assist them to make adequate and sensitive arrangements to help girls cope with menstruation? – asked by Tulip Siddiq, Labour MP for Hampstead & Kilburn"sex+education" - g120772.r0





“Porn for women” searches are up, but female sexuality existed long before Fifty Shades


Parliament staff made 24,000 attempts to view online pornography in four months


Are more women getting into pornography? We’re talking internet porn searches this week, from Parliament daily log-in rates to news that more women are logging into YouPorn. Is your porn watching increasing or decreasing? And what about feminist porn? – 7-minute Badass Extra debate from podcast Badass Women’s Hour on 16/1/18


UK pornographers fear age verification laws may harm business – from 7/11/17

AND: • UK porn is about to change in a way you're not going to like – from 24/11/17
AND: • Pornhub owner may become the UK's gatekeeper of online porn – from 23/11/17


Here's the porn that women watched in 2017


Question on pornography asked in Parliament

The furore over the appointment of Toby Young exposed widespread distaste for a casual attitude towards the relational and other harms of pornography. The recent consultation on the internet safety strategy included no measures to mitigate these harms. Will this now receive thorough attention given that opinion seems to be shifting on pornography? – question asked on 9/1/18 by Lord Farmer, Conservative


Teenagers and pornography – 3-minute video from 2/15 from FamilyLives 

FROM: • Porn

AND: • Sexting – 3-minute video from 2/15 from FamilyLives


What’s the problem? – A guide for parents of children and young people who have got in trouble online (eg sexting, viewing porn etc) – from 3/15 from the Lucy Faithfull Foundation


“I saw your willy” – 1-minute Share Aware video from 1/15 from the NSPCC 

FROM: • Share Aware campaign (NSPCC)





Aziz Ansari didn’t do anything illegal but that’s not the point

AND: • Aziz Ansari allegations show that people have a lot to learn about consent

AND: • Jameela Jamil on consent: “No” is a right, not a privilege

AND: • Will more cautious relationships mean less sex in 2018?

AND: • The Aziz Ansari story is a mess, but so are the arguments against it

AND: • Aziz Ansari and the reductive ways we talk about consent

AND: • Aziz Ansari’s bad date: let’s get clear about consent

AND: • Aziz Ansari and the paradox of “No”

AND: • The humiliation of Aziz Ansari

AND: • There is no rampaging #MeToo mob

AND: • The best takes on the Aziz Ansari story

AND: • Are discussions around sexual abuse and consent complicated by a limited vocabulary? – on Twitter

AND: • Aziz Ansari, #MeToo, and the Media – 51-minute discussion on Stuff Mom Never Told You podcast


How deeply rooted perceptions of sex can inform ideas of pleasure and consent – on Twitter


“Bad sex”, or the sex we don’t want but have anyway

AND: • My “bad sex” is my daughter’s “assault” — and I’m glad

AND: • We’re in the middle of an uncomfortable discussion about bad sex. Good 

AND: • FINE, let’s talk about the Aziz piece. But first, let’s talk about “bad sex”

AND: • On Aziz Ansari and “bad sex”


Is blockchain the answer to sexual consent?


A comic explaining what consent does and doesn’t look like 


This viral thread shows why talking to our friends about our sex lives is so important


Talking to your children about sexual boundaries and consent

On her podcast Solo Parent Life, Dr Robbin Rockett talks to Mike Domitrz, author of Can I Kiss You? and the founder of the Date Safe Project which focuses on consent and healthy conversations about relationships – warning: very American


From Blurred Lines to New rules: how sex in pop has changed for ever


Talking about consent – 4-minute video from 2/15 from FamilyLives FROM: • Consent


Sex and relationships – 4-minute video from 2/15 from FamilyLives 

PLUS: • Your influence on your teen's attitude to sex and relationships

AND: • Healthy relationships – 4-minute video from 2/15 from FamilyLives 

FROM: • Healthy relationships


What does consent really mean?
Authors: Pete Wallis and Thalia Wallis
Comic book format aimed at teenagers which explores the meaning of consent. Follows a group of teenagers chatting on their way home from school. They discuss the myths and taboos surrounding sex and consent, talk about their own experiences and debate what's okay and what's not. Includes questions and information to start a conversation with a young person, or to form the basis for a lesson or workshop on sex, healthy relationships and consent.
Publication details: London: Singing Dragon, 2018

Buy it here:


How can we teach consent if we don’t teach about pleasure?

AND: • O.School – The sex ed we all should have had – O.School creates intimate spaces to talk about sex and pleasure online with live stream talks





“Adolescence now lasts from 10 to 24”


The letter your teenager can’t write you – from 23/6/15 – powerful advice to parents that went viral from psychologist/trauma specialist Gretchen Schmelzer


Safeguarding Children in the Digital Age – conference on 22/3 in central London


Mental health: children and young people
The Evidence-Based Practice Unit, a partnership between University College London (UCL) and the Anna Freud National Centre for Children and Families, has published findings from the HeadStart annual survey looking at the mental health and wellbeing of 10- to 16-year-olds. Findings from a survey of 30,843 children and young people from 114 schools in England participating in the HeadStart programme, which pilots different approaches to build young people’s emotional resilience, include: 18.4% were experiencing emotional problems – more common for girls (24.9%) than boys (10.9%) – and 18.8% were exhibiting behavioural problems – more common for boys (23.1%) than girls (15.1%)
Source: UCL news   
Further information: Mental health problems in young people aged 11 to 14: results from the first HeadStart annual survey of 30,000 children (PDF)


Pupil Mental Health Crisis? – survey report 2017
Hub4Leaders in partnership with the Carnegie Centre of Excellence for Mental Health in Schools at Leeds Beckett University has published findings from a survey of 603 UK school leaders and governors looking at pupil mental health. Findings include: 58% of respondents said there is insufficient mental health provision for pupils within their schools; 86% said that social media has directly impacted the mental health of pupils; and 83% said mental health issues have increased in the last five years
Source: Hub4Leaders news item   
Further information: Pupil Mental Health Crisis? ‘survey report 2017: examining the current state of mental wellbeing in young people and children in the UK (PDF)




Safer Internet Day 2018: resources
UK Safer Internet Centre has launched six education packs to help teachers across the UK educate children and young people aged 3-18 about online safety issues. They are among resources created for Safer Internet Day 2018 (celebrated globally on 6/2)


Invitation to participate in nationwide pupil online-safety survey

The NSPCC and the London Grid for Learning (LGfL) are running a pupil online safety survey, free to all UK primary and secondary schools, to mark Safer Internet Day. The online survey is open from 1-28 February and covers a range of online safety issues. Schools need to sign up in advance to participate in the survey. Findings will improve our understanding of the risks children and young people face online as well as providing a better understanding of attitude and behavioural trends that will help inform policy and educational resources

Source: LGfL Nationwide pupil online-safety survey information page  

Further information: Sign up your school: pupil online-safety survey for safer internet day 2018


Children unprepared for social media ‘cliff edge’ as they start secondary school, Children’s Commissioner for England warns in new report
AND: • Life In Likes – Children’s Commissioner report into social media use among 8-12 year olds
AND: • Social media firms must take more responsibility as children grow up “chasing likes”, commissioner warns


Apple investors call for action over iPhone “addiction” in children


Have smartphones destroyed a generation? – from 9/17

AND: • How the smartphone affected an entire generation of kids – by the same author from 22/8/17


To students from students: 50 online rules to live by


Advice for parents – what to do if your child sees something upsetting online


Children and smartphones – Woman’s Hour on 10/1/18 from

Investors have called on Apple to develop software that limits how long children can use its smartphones. Babies are handed devices to keep them quiet, toddlers see a magazine as a tablet to swipe, teenagers have relationships on Snapchat. How much can we call a child's love of technology an addiction? How much are parents to blame for their kids' use?


Screen Time & Family Relationships: Helping Parents Restore Connection – watch the 1-hour webinar on 10/1/18 held by Children’s Screen Time Action Network (American) Join Dr Richard Freed to learn the signs that families are open to guidance on putting down devices and rediscovering relationships. Includes: strategies to engage parents in setting screen/phone limits; tools parents can use to bond with children/teens in an age of distraction; new evidence that smartphones and social media are fuelling teen depression; signs that video gaming is hurting kids’ quality of life; fighting back against a pop culture undermining parents’ efforts to limit screens





How can we support teachers to effectively deliver PSHE education?


International Technical Guidance on Sexuality Education: an evidence-informed approach UNESCO has published revised guidance to assist education, health and other relevant authorities in the development and implementation of school-based and out-of-school sex education programmes and materials

AND: • The report


Justine Greening presses government to ensure sex education is taught in all schools

AND: • Justine Greening’s departure is bad news for anyone who cares about education

AND: • Justine Greening: Why we must update sex and relationships education to make it relevant in 21st-century Britain – blog post from 19/12/17


Dear Viv: When should I tell my daughter about sex? – 2 minutes (from minute 10) from podcast with Vivian Groskop of The Pool


A dad tried to explain sex to his son. What happened next – American


Drama out of crisis: how theatre and improve teach lessons in sexual consent


Debate on social media in House of Lords – on 11/1/18 – touching on legal/moral points around fake news, Facebook algorithms and referencing RSE, porn, online hate, unregulated content, gambling + children, sexual images/abuse of children etc - g391.0


In reference to the National Education Union report on Sexism in schools published in December 2017, what steps is the Department for Education taking to ensure that the relationships and sex education curriculum is designed to prevent sexism and sexual harassment among children and young people at all key stages? – asked on 15/1/18 by Darren Jones, Labour, Bristol North West


Will the Secretary of State for Education take steps to improve and strengthen the teaching of consent during sex and relationship education? – asked on 15/1/18 by Julian Knight, Conservative, Solihull





The Talk – held on 20/1/18 at Rich Mix, London

A funny, moving play about that lesson and all those unfortunate bananas. Let’s talk about sex education… Over the last year, playwright Neela Doležalová asked friends and strangers these questions, and they shared their memories and stories. Over 40 hours of interview material from over 70 people in their teens to their 90s have been edited down to a 70-minute headphone verbatim show

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