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The House of Lords will decide whether to make the subject compulsory: let's hope they make the right choice

Win a year's supply of Mates SKYN condoms

Everyone loves a Christmas party. Whether it's the annual office do or a friend's winter get-together, our social lives rocket over the festive period… and love is certainly in the air.

Mary Wakefield: Sex education classes are the last thing young children need

Such a charming little story I heard this week, told me by a friend who is governor of her local school. We were standing outside Sainsbury's, wondering where the car was parked, when The Twelve Days of Christmas started up in the forecourt. My friend sighed; gave her head a sad little shake. "What?" I asked. Well, she said, as a treat for the younger pupils, two officials from the local NHS trust had arrived to sing a song for them during the class that used to be sex education and is now PSHE (personal, social and health education). It was a jolly song, chosen with the festive season in mind, and because I've since found the lyrics online I can tell you that it went like this:

Pandora: Rushdie's an open book over his love life woes

One Fatwa, an assassination attempt and a, ahem, string of photogenic girlfriends: Salman Rushdie is no stranger to attention.

Republican quits after spanking boast is caught on tape

Another day, another Republican sex scandal. In a now-eerily-familiar scenario, a rising star of the party's conservative wing has been forced to resign – amid allegations that he fails to practise the lifestyle he so dutifully preaches.

Resort tests teenagers for STD

Teenagers in a seaside town will be tested for the sexually transmitted disease chlamydia and given keyring condom holders when they visit the beach in a campaign announced today.

'Sex without condoms can keep you sane'

People who frequently have straight sex without a condom are generally in better mental health than the rest of the population, according to a Scottish psychologist.

The Girlfriend Experience, Young Vic, London

Turned off by the brothel creepers

SSL's profits are boosted by European condom sales

Strong sales of Durex condoms and Scholl footcare products helped SSL International to deliver a 33 per cent rise in full-year pre-tax profits, as it revealed massive growth plans for Russia and surrounding countries through the acquisition of a condom brand and distributor.

Girl finds condom in McDonald's Happy Meal

Swiss police said today they were investigating a seven-year-old girl's discovery of a condom in her McDonald's Happy Meal.

Birth control for men in one injection

Chinese scientists succeed with testosterone jab trial on 1,000 volunteers

Investment Column: Impressive SSL is a safe bet in the recession

Our view: Buy

Share price: 450p (-0.5p)

The Blairs challenge the Pope over gay sex and condoms

As a recent convert to Roman Catholicism, Tony Blair must know that Lent is a period for repentance, quiet reflection and taking stock. Which makes it all the more curious that the former Prime Minister has chosen the holiest time of the year to take on the Pope, of all people, on the position of the Catholic Church in today’s society.

Catholic leader takes stand on adverts

Nichols to condemn TV slots for abortion clinics

Sophie Morris: Sexual pleasure is not offensive (unlike this ad)

Permit me a Mary Whitehouse moment, if you will, but at what stretch of whose imagination is showing children a group of women climaxing on prime-time television a good thing? I'm referring to a Durex advertisement (below) for a female "pleasure gel", which features young women reaching orgasm to the "Queen of the Night" aria from Mozart's Magic Flute.

Claire Beale: Sexy or sick? The big scare over selling condoms

Have you seen the ad with the girl slurping up her own vomit. Twice. It begins at the end of the story and plays backwards. So instead of throwing up down the loo, our heroine hovers up her sick from the toilet bowl. It's enough to turn your stomach.

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File: David Cameron offers a toast during a State Dinner in his honour March 14, 2012
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Jeremy Paxman has admitted he is a 'one-nation Tory' and complained that Newsnight is made by idealistic '13-year-olds' who foolishly think they can 'change the world'.
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Video: It is the type of thing no parent wants to hear

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Homeless Veterans Christmas Appeal: ‘We give them hope. They come to us when no one else can help’

Christmas Appeal

Meet the charity giving homeless veterans hope – and who they turn to when no one else can help
Should doctors and patients learn to plan humane, happier endings rather than trying to prolong life?

Is it always right to try to prolong life?

Most of us would prefer to die in our own beds, with our families beside us. But, as a GP, Margaret McCartney sees too many end their days in a medicalised battle
Thomas Cook's outgoing boss Harriet Green got by on four hours sleep a night - is that what it takes for women to get to the top?

What does it take for women to get to the top?

Thomas Cook's outgoing boss Harriet Green got by on four hours sleep a night and told women they had to do more if they wanted to get on
Christmas jumper craze: Inside the UK factory behind this year's multicultural must-have

Knitting pretty: British Christmas Jumpers

Simmy Richman visits Jack Masters, the company behind this year's multicultural must-have
French chefs have launched a campaign to end violence in kitchens - should British restaurants follow suit?

French chefs campaign against bullying

A group of top chefs signed a manifesto against violence in kitchens following the sacking of a chef at a Paris restaurant for scalding his kitchen assistant with a white-hot spoon
Radio 4 to broadcast 10-hour War and Peace on New Year's Day as Controller warns of cuts

Just what you need on a New Year hangover...

Radio 4 to broadcast 10-hour adaptation of War and Peace on first day of 2015
Cuba set to stage its first US musical in 50 years

Cuba to stage first US musical in 50 years

Claire Allfree finds out if the new production of Rent will hit the right note in Havana
Christmas 2014: 10 best educational toys

Learn and play: 10 best educational toys

Of course you want them to have fun, but even better if they can learn at the same time
Paul Scholes column: I like Brendan Rodgers as a manager but Liverpool seem to be going backwards not forwards this season

Paul Scholes column

I like Brendan Rodgers as a manager but Liverpool seem to be going backwards not forwards this season
Lewis Moody column: Stuart Lancaster has made all the right calls – now England must deliver

Lewis Moody: Lancaster has made all the right calls – now England must deliver

So what must the red-rose do differently? They have to take the points on offer 
Cameron, Miliband and Clegg join forces for Homeless Veterans campaign

Cameron, Miliband and Clegg join forces for Homeless Veterans campaign

It's in all our interests to look after servicemen and women who fall on hard times, say party leaders
Millionaire Sol Campbell wades into wealthy backlash against Labour's mansion tax

Sol Campbell cries foul at Labour's mansion tax

The former England defender joins Myleene Klass, Griff Rhys Jones and Melvyn Bragg in criticising proposals
Nicolas Sarkozy returns: The ex-President is preparing to fight for the leadership of France's main opposition party – but will he win big enough?

Sarkozy returns

The ex-President is preparing to fight for the leadership of France's main opposition party – but will he win big enough?
Is the criticism of Ed Miliband a coded form of anti-Semitism?

Is the criticism of Miliband anti-Semitic?

Attacks on the Labour leader have coalesced around a sense that he is different, weird, a man apart. But is the criticism more sinister?
Ouija boards are the must-have gift this Christmas, fuelled by a schlock horror film

Ouija boards are the must-have festive gift

Simon Usborne explores the appeal - and mysteries - of a century-old parlour game