UN population body urges stronger sex ed for PH
The United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) is pushing for a stronger sex education program in the country to address the problem of teenage pregnancy.
UNFPA Representative to the Philippines Klaus Beck suggested there may be a need for a better sex education program, one that would involve parents in the orientation.
Beck said parents have to know what is being taught and how their children are being instructed in school.
“They will be more comfortable if they know, while it will give teachers more confidence in coming up with innovations in teaching,” Beck said at the launch of the State of the World Population 2016 Report.
Beck said comprehensive sex education should begin as early as possible.
Republic Act No. 10354—the Responsible Parenthood and Reproductive Health Act of 2012—provides that “the government shall provide age- and development-appropriate sexuality education to adolescents.”
Better days ahead
Beck said UNFPA was optimistic that reinforcing sex education program in the country can see better days ahead.
“I don’t think we have seen a lot of changes yet on this (since having the RH law). I think, with the extra push from this administration, yes we are optimistic in helping the Filipinos, especially young girls,” said Beck.
According to UNFPA, 10 is a pivotal age for girls everywhere, as puberty approaches.
In some parts of the world, a girl at this age enjoys limitless possibilities and begins making choices on her education and later life but elsewhere, girls are seen as commodities to be bought, sold or traded, the UNFPA report said.
“In the Philippines, teenage pregnancy limits far too many girls’ hopes, dreams and aspirations. It also costs the country around P33 billion each year in foregone earnings,” said Beck.
‘Long term gains’
“By ensuring girls’ right to education, including age-appropriate comprehensive sexuality education and access to youth friendly sexual and reproductive health services and advice, we could improve the lives of hundreds of thousands, reap long-term gains, and help ensure the success of 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development,” UNFPA said.
The State of World Population report noted that of the 125 million 10-year-olds today, 60 million are girls who are systematically disadvantaged at the global level as they move through adolescence into adulthood.
Beck said better coordination between parents and teachers when it comes to sex education program would also allow parents to come up with their own methods in supplementing the information given by schools.
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