Page last updated at 11:58 GMT, Tuesday, 29 April 2008 12:58 UK

Sexual health unit advises school

Pregnant woman
The clinic offers services to both sexes at the 1200 pupil community college

A sexual health clinic at a Kent school, set up two years ago, is now giving advice and information to 300 students a year.

The clinic at Sittingbourne Community College in Swale offers relationship and pregnancy advice to pupils.

It also distributes condoms and emergency contraceptives to students who have attended a consultation.

The clinic is staffed by a qualified sexual health nurse and funded by Swale Primary Care Trust.

Ann Saunders, deputy head at the college which has 1200 pupils, said: "Most students use the clinic for advice about the consequences if they were to think about having a relationship."

'Feel responsible'

Councillor Carrie Brentnall, personal advisor and intervention officer at the college, said parents were fully informed about the clinic.

"We advertise our services in the newsletter that goes home to parents, and give our young people a really consistent message about speaking to a trusted adult about their concerns."

Ms Saunders said: "We haven't had any complaints from parents at all."

The clinic offers services to both sexes, with a group of boys from the college attending a special workshop hosted by footballers from Charlton Athletic FC.

Ms Saunders said: "It's hugely important that we provide this service to boys too, because there has been a culture of them not taking responsibility.

"This project lets them feel responsible and connected to parenthood."




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