Children as young as seven will be taught how to defend themselves from unwanted touching in a major overhaul to the state’s curriculum.
In the first changes to the health and physical education syllabus in 15 years the emphasis is on consent, power and harassment.
The sweeping modernisation reflects changing global attitudes in a #metoo world and will teach students how to negotiate consent, refuse advances and develop respectful relationships, The Daily Telegraph has reported.
Education Minister Rob Stokes said that the changes to the health and physical education syllabus reflect the modern world
The government said they were intent on the changes being age-appropriate and consulted with NSW Health for over a year as they put the new program together.
From kindergarten, children will be taught to ‘recognise that everyone has a right to say yes or no to affection’ including hugs, tickles and kisses.
Year three students will be taught about mental health with an emphasis on mindfulness and relaxation.
And from year seven, students will be taught how to recognises transphobic bullying, cyber-bullying and racism.
They will be educated on the impact that bullying and racism can have on people and their health and safety.
Students will also learn about abuses of power from year seven.
The sweeping modernisation of the curriculum reflects the changing world by focusing on consent, respect and bullying.
They will be taught skills that help them identify abuses if power in relationships. Seeking help, persistence, assertive responses and problem solving will be key learning objectives during these classes.
High school students will be taught about navigating situations where peers are encouraging sexting.
The new curriculum, which will come into effect next year, has been designed to help students handle the complex situations that modern life presents.
‘The world is unrecognisable compared to just 15 years ago,’ Education Minister Rob Stokes said.
Students will be taught skills like how to defend themselves against unwanted touching, how to navigate situations where sexting is encouraged and the effects of bullying
‘Almost unbelievably, students are being taught from a text drafted before social media or smartphones were invented.’
Mr Stokes said the overhaul was designed to bring schools into the modern era.
‘Stigmas surrounding mental health are a thing of the past. Students need to know that help is always available, and that they should speak openly about mental health,’ Mr Stokes said.
Students will also be taught about our indigenous cultures with the significant contributions indigenous players make to sport and understanding the impact of reconciliation and telling stories in yarning circles.