The National Association of Head Teachers (NAHT) fear that Primary School children are learning too much about ‘sex’ from the internet. The idea has been put forward that the effects of Pornography are taught as part of sex education modules?
“Campaigners say the easy access of porn online is harming children, and the NSPCC says they have seen an upsurge in calls from teenagers upset by what they have seen.” –Mail Online
With things such as the 9pm watersheds on television and internet security to block these kinds of websites, is it not contradictory to then teach young children about pornography at school? Where is the ethical value in this decision?
The real issue is the way in which both women and men are being perceived in the pornographic content which these children are viewing, providing unrealistic images about how they are meant to both act and look. However, contrary to this, there is a very similar issue with the media and the portrayal of celebrities to young girls. Glamour model Jordan (Katie Price) is criticised for her somewhat ‘raunchy’ image and is often referred to as being very fake. These images of celebrities are much more accessible to children within things such as glossy magazines and on the television. This poses the question, is teaching about the unrealistic approach to both sex and body image within pornography the best option when the media and its sexualised content is much more accessible and less graphic?
My viewpoint on this issue is that the sexualisation of men and women in the media should be taught as part of sex education to teach children about feeling comfortable in their own skin, rather than subjecting them to learn about pornography when it is likely that some nine year old children are not even aware of what the word means.
Although I doubt what would be taught is promiscuous and graphic, I feel that teaching the basics about sexual intercourse, childbirth, general safety rules and dealing with peer pressure is enough. Within the younger generation, they are likely to want to have sex, however teaching about pornography may have the opposite effect than intended on the younger generation and therefore raising awareness of such an industry could add to already overly sexualised society.
Arguably, explicit content is so easily accessible to children that it is no longer okay to ignore the issue and that a plan of action needs to be put in place. But it is difficult to say if this is the right one.
Written by Amy Lee.