John Patten, Secretary of State for Education, will today unveil guidelines expected to recommend that sex education be removed from the science curriculum and taught as a separate subject. Pupils will be given guidance on moral responsibility - not just the mechanics of sex.
All state secondary schools will have to provide sex education lessons. Primary schools are not compelled to, but will be required to consider whether to offer lessons. New legislation will allow parents to withdraw their children from sex education lessons if they wish.
Head teachers and school governing bodies are expected to be invited to comment on the guidelines which would come into force from next August.