A primary school teacher's conversation with her girl student's parent has gone viral because of the topics involved. Snapshots of the WeChat interaction show the parent complaining that it is too early for the teacher to be discussing pregnancy and anatomical differences between boys and girls to a class of 9-year-olds.
The parent even said he/she would raise the issue with the headmaster.
The parent's concern is understandable. He/she wants to protect his/her child from sex-related discussions so early in life. However, the parent fails to realize that sex education can actually shield the child from sexual exploitation. Ignorance could lead to a child being sexually exploited without even realizing it.
As a popular saying goes: "You might think the child is too young to receive sex education, but the devil never thinks a child is too young to be violated."
Sex education has long been neglected by schools across China, but the problem is far worse in rural areas. Lower local living standards, traditional social attitudes, and a lack of educational resources have made it difficult for teachers to introduce a more comprehensive curriculum.
In Gansu more than 70% of junior high school students haven’t received any form of sex education, according to a 2018 study. Most of those who have are only given a handful of classes, and even the students who have received the most sex education show little understanding of issues such as gender violence, AIDS, contraception, and abortion, the researchers found.
Proper sex education can help keep children safe. By letting children know how they should seek help if someone tries to sexually molest them, we can protect children from sexual abuse. Therefore, instead of opposing sex education in school, parents should welcome it and cooperate with schools by imparting sex education at home too.