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B463 - Health, Social and Sexual Education Bill 2012 (Second Reading)

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    Health, Social and Sexual Education Bill 2012, TSR Socialist

    Health, Social and Sexual Education Bill 2012

    An act to provide school-age children with a stronger, more in-depth understanding of recreational drugs & mental illnesses, their effects & their social impact.

    BE IT ENACTED by The Queen's most Excellent Majesty, by and with the advice and consent of the Commons in this present Parliament assembled, in accordance with the provisions of the Parliament Acts 1911 and 1949, and by the authority of the same, as follows:-

    1. Education on Recreational Drugs

    (1) State schools are required to teach pupils all the known side effects of drugs deemed to be recreational, and the common ways in which these effects manifest themselves.
    (2) State schools are required to teach pupils the biological effects of drugs and actions that can be taken to minimise the damage done by these effects.
    (3) State schools are required to teach pupils of the social impact of drugs, including that on the supplying countries - detailing the wars and bloodshed caused by battles between drug cartels, as well as the environmental impact of production and the effects that the drug-trade can have on a country's citizens

    2. Education on Mental Illnesses and Mental Health

    (1) State schools are required to educate pupils on various causes of mental illnesses – both those of a biological nature and those triggered by events within life, with detail given to the changes in the biology of the brain that arise from the disorders.
    (2) State schools are required to educate pupils on the common symptoms of the illnesses included in the national curriculum, and how they differ from similar day to day experiences as well as the damage these symptoms can cause to day to day life.
    (3) State schools are required to teach pupils of the treatment options available, both drug and therapy based, as well as how these treatments work and the potential side-effects and drawbacks of the various treatments.

    3. Set-up within the National Curriculum

    (1) The changes to education of recreational drugs and mental illnesses is amalgamated with the current sexual education within the national curriculum and taught in the subject Health, Social & Sexual Education (HSSE).
    (2) This subject is compulsory for all students up to and including GCSE level (Key Stage 4).
    (3) The details of the curriculum, including subject depth and specific conditions taught, will be designed and decided upon by the Secretary of State for Education.
    (4) New teachers to teach HSSE shall be trained (and this training funded) by the Department of Education's Teaching Agency.

    4. For the purposes of this Act-

    (1) “State school” shall refer to any non-fees paying school funded by the government through means of tax.
    (2) “Recreational drugs” shall refer to any substance that appears on the Narcotic list, as set out in the Narcotics Act 2011, as well as alcohol and tobacco.
    (3) “Mental Illnesses” shall refer to any illness listed within the psychological disorder section (Chapter V) in the International Classification of Diseases (ICD-10) produced by the World Health Organization (WHO)

    5. Commencement, Short Title and Extent

    (1) This Act may be cited as the HSSE Act 2012
    (2) This bill shall extend to England; and
    (3) Shall come into force on the 1st January 2013 following Royal Assent

    Notes
    A. HSSE and PSHEE

    With regard to the similarity in subject matter between the proposed curricular subject and the existing Personal, Social, Health and Economic Education (PSHEE), the primary differences are:

    (i) PSHEE is non-statutory, whereas the proposed HSSE would be mandatory.
    (ii) PSHEE incorporates a variety of topics relating to behavior and functioning in society, whereas HSSE would focus on the causes, effects and treatments of mental illnesses, and conditions induced by alcohol and drug usage.

    In light of increases in alcohol and drug-related incidents (hospital admissions and deaths), it is believed that incorporation of the proposed topics into the mandatory curriculum would be socially beneficial, while focus on the nature of mental illnesses is long overdue and is thought to have a similarly beneficial effect on attitudes to life for people suffering from such conditions.

    Furthermore, it is noted by Ofsted's assessment of PSHEE (Summary - PSHE in schools; 'Key Findings', point 8) that 'Lack of discrete curriculum time in a quarter of the schools visited, particularly the secondary schools, meant that programmes of study were not covered in full. The areas that suffered included aspects of sex and relationships education; education about drugs, including alcohol; and mental health issues that were not covered at all or were dealt with superficially.' This relates directly to the topics emphasized by this Act; it is believed that the introduction of a mandatory and dedicated subject relating to these topics will help overcome current deficiencies.

    B. Finances

    It is believed that any costs incurred through implementation of this Act, such as for new teacher training provisions and resources, are easily eclipsed by the costs that the problems this Act seeks to address demand:

    (i) Alcohol

    Spoiler:
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    Admissions:

    Overall, in 2009/10 there were around 1,057,000 admissions related to alcohol consumption where an alcohol-related disease, injury or condition was the primary reason for hospital admission or a secondary diagnosis. This is a 12% increase on the 2008/09 figure, where there were 945,500 such admissions and over double the number in 2002/03 when there were around 510,800 admissions
    Costs:

    In 2003, the Cabinet Office report Alcohol misuse: how much does it cost? estimated that alcohol misuse costs the health service £1.7 billion per year (in 2001 prices), while the costs associated with alcohol-related crime and anti-social behaviour was estimated to be £7.3 billion each year. It also estimated that workplace costs of alcohol misuse are £6.4 billion per year through loss in productivity.
    In 2008, the then government produced an update to the 2003 report. The report, The Cost of alcohol harm to the NHS in England, takes into account increases in unit costs as well as more recent and accurate data on alcohol consumption and harm. Using similar methods to the 2003 report, it is estimated that the cost of alcohol harm to the NHS in England is £2.7 billion in 2006/07 prices


    (ii) Tobacco

    Spoiler:
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    Admissions:

    n England in 2009/10 there were approximately 1.5 million admissions for adults aged 35 and over with a primary diagnosis of a disease that can be caused by smoking. This is approximately 4,100 admissions per day on average. The annual number of admissions has been rising steadily since 1996/97, when the number of such admissions was approximately 1.1 million.
    Costs:

    Illness and disease associated with smoking gives rise to costs in the NHS. Direct costs of smoking arise from GP consultations, prescriptions for drugs and various costs related to treating diseases attributable to smoking.
    Research carried out by Oxford University estimated that smoking cost the NHS in the UK £5.2 billion in 2005/06, approximately 5.5% of total healthcare costs. This updates the estimated cost of between £1.4 billion and £1.5 billion a year, estimated by research carried out by the Centre for Health Economics at the University of York in 1998.
    It is important to consider that these are costs of treating smoking-related illnesses and do not include costs related to working days lost or social security ill health payments for example, nor do they include any costs related to the effects of second-hand smoking.


    (iii) Illicit Drugs

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    In 2003/04 problem drug users were estimated to being responsible for a total economic and social cost of around £15.4 billion. This equates to £44,231 per year per problem Class A drug user. Drug-related crime accounts for 90% of this cost (£13.9 billion), drug-related deaths 6% (£923 million), health service use 3% (£488 million) and social care 0.4% (£69 million)


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    Aye aye Miss American Pie.


    This was posted from The Student Room's iPhone/iPad App
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    I look at myself and think I didn't have this stuff and I am fine (overall bar a couple of vices ) so Abstain.
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    I don't really like the part about drugs, seems to be too easy to abuse. I don't trust teachers don't be biased. When talking about the effects of the drugs via linked studies, will teachers explain the criticism of those studies? I mean look at this analysis of TalktoFrank's page on Cannabis http://www.ukcia.org/activism/cannab...ed_frank.php#7. There were clear examples of dishonesty and lacking in neutrality. If a teacher mentions for example the effects on blood pressure and heart rate, will it be in contrast to the effects on blood pressure and heart rate done by exercising? Will they explain the reversibility of some of the long-term effects?

    In terms of drug trade, will they explain how prohibition has fueled this? Explain how not all drugs have to go through the drug trade? In terms of environmental effects, will they explain in relations to other commonly things done effects on environment? Ability to reduce effects by consuming cannabis differently possibly?
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    A great idea. We need to change the way we introduce young people or children to drugs - rather than limited discussion that only consider the legal effects of drug use we need to educate people about the physical and social effects. Aye from me.
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    Given the likely effect of the Legalisation of Narcotics, Duty Reform and VAT Reduction Act 2011 on the method of production and distribution of drugs, educating children on 'the environmental impact of production and the effects that the drug-trade can have on a country's citizens' is about as relevant as educating them on the environmental impact of breweries.
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    Several reasons I disagree with this. One part of it, picked up on my chrisawhitmore, is that it seems due to the passage of the Legalisation of Narcotics Act 2011 there is no more point in educating children about drugs than there is in educating them about other bad things in life - why single out drugs as particularly bad?

    My principal concern, however, is that I'm concerned that due to the passage of Acts such as this one the National Curriculum is being diluted by lots of very specialised subjects which appear to be seeking to compensate for a lack of 'common sense' or a good upbringing. I agreed with the Politics Education Act 2011 because it was incorporating politics into Citizenship and PSHE. It also only sought to teach the subject until KS4. I'm appalled that this Act suggests that HSSE must be taught until KS4! More time should be dedicated to real subjects and not diverted to subjects like this one. I think it may be wise for those topics you suggest to be included within the existing PSHE teaching, however, to force schools to dedicate resources, time and attention to this specific study is wrong and that's why I cannot support this bill.
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    (Original post by chiggy321)
    Several reasons I disagree with this. One part of it, picked up on my chrisawhitmore, is that it seems due to the passage of the Legalisation of Narcotics Act 2011 there is no more point in educating children about drugs than there is in educating them about other bad things in life - why single out drugs as particularly bad?
    Because, as the notes show, drugs have a rather large impact on society - both in deaths and health problems, but also in costs to the NHS and other services that have to deal with issues that arise. Proper education on the drugs should help to counter-act this and lessen the problems they cause. Also, I think it was mentioned in the first reading, if drugs are legalised then teaching children about them is even more crucial.

    My principal concern, however, is that I'm concerned that due to the passage of Acts such as this one the National Curriculum is being diluted by lots of very specialised subjects which appear to be seeking to compensate for a lack of 'common sense' or a good upbringing. I agreed with the Politics Education Act 2011 because it was incorporating politics into Citizenship and PSHE. It also only sought to teach the subject until KS4. I'm appalled that this Act suggests that HSSE must be taught until KS4! More time should be dedicated to real subjects and not diverted to subjects like this one. I think it may be wise for those topics you suggest to be included within the existing PSHE teaching, however, to force schools to dedicate resources, time and attention to this specific study is wrong and that's why I cannot support this bill.
    While it may compensate for a poor upbringing, I'd argue that's fairly important. We cannot ensure that parents impart suitable knowledge onto their children, ensure they are aware of the world around them, however we can teach them ourselves through the education system.
    Can I ask why the Politics Education Act was fine because it only taught the subject up to KS4, but this one is appauling because it teaches up to KS4?
    The whole point of the bill is that they will be taught as such - it's an overhaul of the PHSE system, which as the OFSTED report indicates, is likely well overdue.
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    No. This constant education about drugs only encourages their use, because kids think it's OK because they 'know the risks'.
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    (Original post by Alofleicester)
    Because, as the notes show, drugs have a rather large impact on society - both in deaths and health problems, but also in costs to the NHS and other services that have to deal with issues that arise. Proper education on the drugs should help to counter-act this and lessen the problems they cause. Also, I think it was mentioned in the first reading, if drugs are legalised then teaching children about them is even more crucial.
    Yes, but the intention of the Narcotics Act 2011 was to alleviate those effects, and as your party supported the bill I assume you believe that is likely to happen. Where do you draw the line? Obesity is a problem - but we don't have a mandatory subject to teach about that. I'm assuming that alcohol is covered by the provisions of this Act? If not then the same argument applies there too.

    (Original post by Alofleicester)
    While it may compensate for a poor upbringing, I'd argue that's fairly important. We cannot ensure that parents impart suitable knowledge onto their children, ensure they are aware of the world around them, however we can teach them ourselves through the education system.
    Can I ask why the Politics Education Act was fine because it only taught the subject up to KS4, but this one is appauling because it teaches up to KS4?
    The whole point of the bill is that they will be taught as such - it's an overhaul of the PHSE system, which as the OFSTED report indicates, is likely well overdue.
    But why should everyone be subject to this lesson because it may benefit a few? That's is my problem with this one-size-fits-all subject. I'm not going to be smoking weed any time soon. I didn't need a lesson to tell me that it was just common sense, and it's the same for many others. Society is currently rather condemning of drugs - this culture alone is enough to dissuade most people, and for the sake of the minority who don't feel dissuaded it's an ove-reaction to require hours and hours of teaching.

    The KS4 comment was a typo, apologies. I meant to say that the Politics Education Act only requires it to be taught in KS3, this requires to be to taught in KS4. Students reach a stage, at my opinion in KS4, where they should be able to take more responsibility for their subject choices- to require everyone to study this at KS4 perhaps at the expense of a worthwhile subject which will give them useful skills and potentially a GCSE is just wrong. I agree that an overhaul in PSHE is needed - but given the provisions of this Act is appears that there is no room for any other topics to be included other than mental health and drugs. What about political education? What are the implications of this Act upon the Politics Education Act? What about other topics contained in PSHE such as financial capability and the like? I don't disagree that drugs education should be changed, perhaps so as to focus on the lesser-known consequences of drugs use - however, not in the form suggested here.
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    (Original post by tehFrance)
    I look at myself and think I didn't have this stuff and I am fine (overall bar a couple of vices ) so Abstain.
    You really think you're "fine"? :lolwut:
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    (Original post by JPKC)
    Aye aye Miss American Pie.


    This was posted from The Student Room's iPhone/iPad App
    :lol:

    Aye.
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    (Original post by davidmarsh01)
    You really think you're "fine"? :lolwut:
    Er what did I just write? learn to read.
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    (Original post by tehFrance)
    Er what did I just write? learn to read.
    *le sigh*

    It was a joke.
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    At first I saw "state schools are required to touch pupils" :s

    But a no from me I think, even though it's well intentioned, for reasons already raised by other members.

    (Original post by davidmarsh01)
    You really think you're "fine"? :lolwut:
    PRSOM :rofl:
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    This is in cessation.
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    Division!!
Updated: July 9, 2012
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