“What we have is lessons about sex, but nothing about the consequences of sex” – Shirley Williams

The latest Journal of Liberal History (published by the Liberal Democrat History Group) is a special issue on liberalism and women, including an interview with Shirley Williams.

One question looked at what changes in society she thought were still needed when it comes to issues of gender, and this part of her answer caught my eye:

Societal change has to be in two ways. One which has already happened is the move towards flexible working … The second big societal change is to teach children at school about parenthood, certainly in secondary schools. What we have is lessons about sex, but nothing about the consequences of sex – which is a bit silly. Parental responsibilities should be emphasised as part of the conversation about sex. That should include, for example, children having some time in the school year where they spend time looking after children. In  a lot of cases you could get fifth formers to help inter-school for two hours per week so they get to know how demanding young children are. Children take up a colossal amount of time, and grasping that would be a key part of accepting the key roles they would have to play.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

All comments and data you submit with them will be handled in line with the privacy and moderation policies.