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Page last updated at 08:56 GMT, Tuesday, 23 February 2010

Sex education bill 'not watered down'

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The Schools Secretary, Ed Balls, says that amendments to the bill regulating the teaching of sex and relationships in schools will mean that children will be more able "to make informed choices".

Reacting to concerns that the legislation will be weakened by the move to allow lessons to reflect a school's religious character, Mr Balls told Today presenter John Humphrys that "there is no watering down and also there is no opt out for any faith school from teaching the full, broad, balanced curriculum on sex relationship education and that's a huge step forward."

He said that the bill is an "overdue and radical change" which would oblige all schools to "give both sides of the argument" on topics like contraception, same-sex marriage and abortion.

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