Children as young as eight years old are taking drugs. Britain has the highest teenage pregnancy rate in Europe. So how effective is our sex and drug education?
There are reports in the press this week that according to experts, children as young as six are being treated for addiction to cannabis and are presenting symptoms including paranoia, anxiety, depression and even schizophrenia.
It also emerged last September in Scotland that children aged 10-years-old were dealing drugs.
Dr Michael Fitzpatrick will suggest in Community Care next week that the rise of drug abuse among young children has coincided with the increase of drugs education.
He says: “Gordon Brown has endorsed the fashionable “drugs education”, particularly favouring its extension to primary schools. Here is another policy immune to the evidence of failure.
“Never mind that the spread of drugs education appears to coincide with a dramatic increase in drug taking by school students – the government believes that we need more of the same, extended to even younger children.”
At the same time, Britain has the highest teenage pregnancy rate in Europe despite numerous government initiatives designed to take the problem.
Have Your Say
Given that children taking drugs are getting younger and Britain has the highest teenage pregnancy rate in Britain, is sex and drug education in Britain effective at educating children or does it merely fuel the curiosity of young people?
Dr Michael Fitzpatrick suggests: “Why not instead teach children something interesting and inspiring, that might give them the truly radical idea that culture and society have more to offer than drug-induced oblivion?”