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To better understand the current situation of sexuality education at school and the barriers for implementing effective programs, more research on educators and their experiences within the context of professional development is needed. Thus, we reviewed the broader curriculum and policy content for sex education in Australian tertiary teaching institutions, as well as the availability and content of pre-service teacher training.
Sexuality Education Matters is designed to support pre-service teacher education programs to prepare students to teach sexuality education in primary and secondary schools. It builds on the research and teaching experience of Debbie Ollis and Lyn Harrison at Deakin University. It assumes that sexuality education in Australian schools is part of a comprehensive health and physical education curriculum. Even so, many of the activities, suggested readings and teaching and learning experiences could be adapted or used in other contexts that focus on school-based sexuality education.
The 1st National Survey of Secondary Teachers of Sexuality Education involved nearly 300 secondary school teachers from every jurisdiction in Australia including government, Catholic and independent schools. The key findings are arranged under the themes of teaching workforce, the content of sexuality education, barriers and support, teachers’ views and opinions and school policy requirements.