Prevent Watch

RSE and the Prevent counter-extremism policy: what parents are asking and why it matters

RSE talk_Nov2022

I spoke about Prevent to parents who had gathered for something that may seem unrelated to counter-extremism: the changes in the curriculum with regards to Relationships and Sex Education (RSE) and their concerns about refraining from participating in discussions regarding this aspect of their children’s schooling.

When surveyed on why they did not want to participate in RSE discussions, 3.4% of parents said it was because of Prevent, adding to the growing body of evidence that proves the UK government’s counter-extremism policy has a self-censoring effect on education.

Even though Prevent Watch has not seen cases of referrals in relation to RSE, we have seen a case where a child was referred to Prevent for saying that homosexuality was against his religion. This led to an interrogation by counter-extremism and policy.

The fears of parents are many and enough in the normal journey of raising children today. Surely their education should be a source of relief rather than of fear.

As part of the People’s Review of Prevent we published earlier this year as an alternative to the Government’s review of Prevent led by William Shawcross (which has been delayed by more than three years), we raise an important point about the securitisation of spaces such as schools and colleges.

Read the full blog: RSE and Prevent: what parents are asking and why it matters – The People Review of Prevent

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