A day after writing on his website about banning sex education, Union Health Minister, Harsh Vardhan has come on a back foot after an uproar by the socially dominant groups on his so called 'regressive' comment. Now, he is quoted to be saying, "Sex education is necessary but without vulgarization."
Vardhan's view on sex education a day ago kicked up a row and debate on the current status of sex education in the country. Many vocal and city-bred progressive people had seen minister's views on sex education as regressive and backward.
He has now clarified that he was against the present form and its transaction of sex education in the country called Adolescence Education Program (AEP).
Also, he has also pointed out to the crudity of illustrations in the current sex education material and use of culturally objectionable symbols in it.
I think that there is need to contextualize sex education in India
which is full of cultural diversity. Best would be to leave it to the schools to develop their own programs on adolescence education which are best suited to their local context.
I suggest that even the health ministry should come out with two or three more alternative programs on adolescence education for different regions to choose from, including the present one. Besides it, there should a provision of adapting these programs by the schools.
Education needs to be contextualized to the cultural diversity of India and there should differentiated learning with freedom to learn at one's pace and it should be inclusive of individual leaning styles of students.
For implementing inclusive education by respecting diversity, Charles Handy has aptly said, '"Instead of a national curriculum for education, what is really needed is an individual curriculum for every child. "
I would like to end my write up by quoting Jim Rohn: "If someone is going down the wrong road, he doesn't need motivation to speed him up. What he needs is education to turn him around."
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