DepEd sued for including sex education in schools; CBCP says sex ed is immoral
The Department of Education (DepEd) is being sued by a parents' group for including sex education in schools' curricula, reports GMAnews.tv. The petitioners, led by senatorial candidate Jo Aurea Imbong, filed a class suit at the Quezon City Regional Trial Court last June 21. Named respondents were Education Secretary Mona Valisno and Undersecretary Ramon Bacani, among others.
The petitioners asked the Quezon City Regional Trial Court to restrain the DepEd from implementing the teaching of sex education. According to the petitioners, DepEd Memorandum No. 26, which allows teaching sex education to grade school pupils who are at least nine years old, was unconstitutional and arbitrary.
"For being baseless, DepEd Memo 261 is unreasonable and arbitrary unless DepEd is candid enough to admit that its real agenda is to transform the sex behaviour of our kids towards being sex-obsessed," the petitioners said.
Imbong told GMA 7's 24 Oras, "We stand by what our constitution protects, namely the rights of parents and original basic and primary rights, to form their own children's character."
Imbong is the Executive Director of the Catholic Bishops Conference of the Philippines' (CBCP) Legal Office.
DepEd Secretary Mona Valisno told 24 Oras that kids shouldn't learn sex education from other sources. "They get [information] from the Internet, they get [it] from anywhere, they get [it] from the movies."
Valisno told 24 Oras they they have invited the CBCP for a dialogue about the matter but CBCP has not responded. Valisno also told 24 Oras thet she will not force sex education if a lot of people are against it, and will leave the issue with the incoming DepEd secretary.
The United Nations (UN), has also expressed support for the teaching of sex education in public schools, reports Philstar.com. According to the UN, sex education will provide accurate and appropriate information on how to protect the health of young people.
The UN also pointed out that providing information will enable young people to make the right choices for themselves and their families, and may help them rise above poverty. The UN said the State is responsible for providing this information to adolescents, as stated in the Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC).
"As a signatory to the CRC, the Philippines, through the Department of Education, is taking this responsibility seriously and integrating into primary grades V and VI topics such as learning about the body, personal hygiene, coping with peer pressure and making responsible decisions," UN said in a statement.
"Whilst parents have an important role to play, young people also trust those in authority, such as teachers or doctors, who can help them accept and understand the process of growing up."