A faith-based campaign group is seeking to ensure that parents are granted the right to withdraw their children from sex education classes. 'Let Kids Be Kids' is challenging new policy from the Department for Education (DfE) which stipulates that the newly created Relationships and Sex Education (RSE) curriculum is compulsory for students starting on 1st September.
Charlie Colchester, the founder of Let Kids Be Kids, told Premier that he was shocked the government had suddenly decided to prohibit parents from withdrawing children on their own discretion.
"Up to now, parents have had a complete right, enshrined in law for decades to remove their children from Religious and Sex education classes, if they're not happy with it. But for some reason, as part of the process of putting in place these new regulations, the Department for Education has suddenly decided to remove the right of parental withdrawal," he said.
"This is a very, very, very important issue. And one which, in our opinion, is both illegal and wrong. It's for that reason that we've set up Let Kids Be Kids coalition, as a way of putting down a marker that something's got to be done about this and urgently.
Parents are having the right of withdrawal removes without adequate consultation, or indeed any great parliamentary process about it."
Colchester added that, in light of how serious he believes the situation to be, Let Kids Be Kids will seek to "start legal action against the Department for Education", most likely "at the end of this very week".
He added: "We're going to be starting a judicial review in the high court against the Department for Education, on the grounds that the new arrangements, the new curriculum, the new guidelines are illegal, and that they are unacceptable".
On its FAQs page related to the latest curriculum and policy changes, the Department for Education says the new classes seek to "equip your child with knowledge to make informed decisions about their wellbeing, health and relationships as well as preparing them for a successful adult life".