No funding for sex education

SEX education classes at Honiton Community College are under threat after health bosses withdrew funding.

SEX education classes at Honiton Community College are under threat after health bosses withdrew funding. Devon Primary Care Trust told the school that it would have to find �4,000 to keep the Added Power and Understanding in Sex Education (APUASE) programme running.Principal Norman Tyson (pictured right) said the cut came as a surprise and they are struggling to find an alternative at such short notice.He said: "It's been a bit of a blow. We are looking to see how we can deliver the programme within our own budget and resources. "Given the sheer pressure on the budget it will be difficult."He said he did not want to think about possible repercussions if the programme could not be delivered. Referring to the rising number of teenage pregnancies, he said: "We can only make the assumption that sex education is, hopefully, having an impact."A Health of the Nation Report in January showed that teen pregnancy rates in the UK are the worst in Western Europe - double the average. The APAUSE programme integrates peer education with contributions from local health services. Dr Virginia Pearson, director of public health for Devon Primary Care Trust (PCT) and Devon County Council, said the PCT regretted the late notification given to schools.She said: "APAUSE is currently delivered in 70 per cent of schools in Devon and is not, therefore, targeted to those schools most in need - schools with students from wards with high levels of teenage conceptions." She added that the Devon Healthy Schools Programme offers training courses for staff, governors and personal, social and health education coordinators on all aspect personal and social and health education, including sex and relationships education.


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