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This pamphlet summarises the key points about current sexuality education in New Zealand.
Sexuality education is the only subject in New Zealand schools which requires parents to be consulted on the content. Since it is associated with moral and social issues, it is a controversial topic. However, what has been notably missing from the debate is the voice of those most immediately concerned with the outcome— the adolescent.
Pubertal changes in girls and boys are treated differently in school materials in New Zealand. Girls are taught about menstruation in a scientific manner oriented towards reproduction, hygiene and personal stress. Boys receive more positive information about 'exciting' and 'powerful' bodily changes which they can enjoy. The picture of growing up which girls receive is relatively bleak, and is out of touch with the realities of their own lives and those of adult women around them. …