Following reactions about the new sex education bill voted into law by parliament, the education ministry on Monday has released a breakdown of the curriculum that will be taught to each grade.
Starting in pre-school, children will be taught the what the ministry is calling the “underwear rule”, which will explain to children how to protect themselves and what is appropriate and inappropriate touching.
Children at this age will be taught about the family, friendships, and how to speak to adults about problems or issues that arise.
Meanwhile, starting from primary school, children will learn about reproductive and private body parts, ‘good and bad’ secrets, a safety net, the European emergency number, friendship, healthy relationships, personal hygiene/body care, identity (habits, gender), emotions (recognition, expression, causes), friendship and respect.
By the time children will finish primary school in the sixth grade, they will learn about smoking, alcohol, misinformation, reports of abusive content, data protection, phishing, sexting, grooming, flirting, masturbation, wet dreams, menstruation, and body changes associated with becoming a teenager, along with protecting oneself from violence.
Meanwhile, starting in gymnasium, children will learn about health, the self and how to better oneself safely, teen years and personal relationships.
Reaching the end of gymnasium, children will be taught about the characteristics of adolescence, including sexual maturation, behaviours that promote adolescent sexual health, and factors influencing adolescent sexual and reproductive health.
They will also learn about healthy relationships, reproductive and sexual rights, human rights, sexual behaviour.
Going into lyceum, teens will learn similar things in sex education, as well as the development of identity that occurs in the teenage years.
By the end of lyceum, they will learn about healthy romantic relationships, communication, listening, negotiating, solving problems, self-control and self-respect.
Teens will also learn about creating a family, protecting the rights of vulnerable people, ethical dilemmas and family planning.
Back in December 2022, then President Nicos Anastasiades signed the legislation on sex education in schools.
The bill soon became engulfed in wider controversy, with independent MP Andreas Themistocleous accused of hate speech after describing it as an abomination – adding “they’ll teach kids that there are 64 genders, about gender fluidity. So that Kostakis was born a boy and then became Mariyoulla”.