International technical guidance on sexuality education : An evidence-informed approach
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The Guidance was developed to assist education, health and other relevant authorities in the development and implementation of school-based and out-of-school comprehensive sexuality education programmes and materials. It is immediately relevant for government education ministers and their professional staff, including curriculum developers, school principals and teachers. Non-governmental organizations (NGOs), youth workers and young people can also use the document as an advocacy or accountability tool, for example by sharing it with decision-makers as a guide to best practices and/or for its integration within broader agendas, such as the SDGs. The Guidance is also useful for anyone involved in the design, delivery and evaluation of sexuality education programmes both in and out of school, including stakeholders working on quality education, sexual and reproductive health (SRH), adolescent health and/or gender equality, among other issues. The Guidance emphasizes the need for programmes that are informed by evidence, adapted to the local context, and logically designed to measure and address factors such as beliefs, values, attitudes and skills which, in turn, may affect health and well-being in relation to sexuality. The quality and impact of school-based CSE is dependent not only on the teaching process – including the capacity National policies and curricula may use different terms to refer to CSE. These include: prevention education, relationship and sexuality education, family-life education, HIV education, life-skills education, healthy life styles and basic life safety. Regardless of the term used, ‘comprehensive’ refers to the development of learners’ knowledge, skills and attitudes for positive sexuality and good sexual and reproductive health. Core elements of CSE programmes share certain similarities such as a firm grounding in human righs and a recognition of the broad concept of sexuality as a natural part of human development of teachers, the pedagogical approaches employed and the teaching and learning materials used – but also on the whole school environment. This is manifested through school rules and in-school practices, among other aspects. CSE is an essential component of a broader quality education and plays a critical role in determining the health and well-being of all learners.