When do we talk to children about sex?

TWO juveniles were recently sentenced in the District Court in Mackay for shocking sexual acts against other children.

An argument given by both their respective lawyers was that neither child had received sex education at home, they had only been taught about sex and appropriate behaviour at school.

The Daily Mercury sought comment on what sex education information was actually offered in schools.

Youth and Family Health Nurse Unit manager Sara Cousins said all public and private high schools in the Mackay region were offered classroom support from the Mackay Sexual Health and Sexual Assault Service.

Sexual health information was provided to students from Years 7 to 12 which covered topics including caring and building relationships, consent, boundaries, contraception choices, sexual health checks, sexual assault awareness, pregnancy choices, common STIs, alcohol and sexting.

"The need for respect and appropriate boundaries in relationships is discussed," she said.

This year all public high schools in Mackay, two in regional areas and one private high school accepted this support, she said.

A Department of Education and Training spokesperson said curriculum addressing relationships and sexual education (RSE) was available.

"While it is primarily up to parents to education their children about sexuality and relationships when children are at an appropriate age, individual state schools in Queensland may develop and deliver age-appropriate RSE programs," the spokesperson said.

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