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New Leaving Cert Sex Ed Curriculum launched

Posted by SchoolDays Newshound on 13/07/2023. New Leaving Cert Sex Ed Curriculum launchedTags: Parenting Teachers

According to the NCCA, arising from the review of Relationships and Sexuality Education (RSE) in primary and post-primary schools, the need to update the Social, Personal and Health Education (SPHE) curriculum was identified as a key priority. This updating work began with Junior Cycle SPHE and is now focused on the redevelopment of the Senior Cycle SPHE curriculum.

The draft Senior Cycle SPHE specification is now available for consultation. The consultation period ends on 18 October 2023. Feedback can be submitted via online survey (students, teacher, parents/guardians) or written submission (individual/organisational). Written submissions should be emailed to

The draft document is proposing that Sex education classes will be mandatory for all senior cycle students at second level for the first time. The new senior cycle curriculum, which integrates SPHE and RSE for the first time, is expected to be introduced in September next year.

The new Leaving Cert sex education curriculum will normalise lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and other LGBTQ+ identities, relationships and families. The draft curriculum states that, the learning outcomes should be taught in a way that LGBTQ+ identities, relationships and families are fully integrated and reflected in teaching and learning, as opposed to being addressed within stand-alone lessons according to the NCCA.

Parents will have the reight to rquest that their child opt out of any learning that contravenes their conscience although once a student turns 18, they wil have the right themselves as to whether to participate in the classes. The subject will now be a Leaving Certificate examination subject.

An updated SPHE curriculicul for Junior Cycle classes is due to commence this septemer and a revamped SPHE curriculum for primary pupils is also in development.

View the 'Draft Senior Cycle SOcial, Personal and Health Education (SPHE) Specification here (For consultation)


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