An academy leads the way by teaching its students lessons in respect and behavior towards women following the murder of Sarah Everard.
Pupils at Wellacre Academy in Flixton, Greater Manchester, have asked teachers to take special classes following protests across the country after the marketing manager’s death.
Classes at the Boys‘ School are part of Relationship, Sex and Health Education (RSHE) and are led by Michelle O’Neill, Director of Humanities.
It is hoped that they will change mindsets and encourage them to speak out against unacceptable behavior in others by using starting statistics and scenarios that make them think.
Teachers say this was prompted when students returned after the lockdown with tough questions sparked by Ms Everard’s death in London and the protests that followed.
Michelle O’Neill said it was a real eye opener for the boys.
She added: “It was not easy because there were, at first, some real misconceptions the boys had about them which automatically made them think of violent crimes.
âI think it was a shock to realize that there are actually a lot of behaviors that can constitute sexual harassment, but there are also a lot of behaviors that can be completely innocent, but which can just be female. particularly on edge. “
Students everywhere will have lessons on combating sexual harassment by law from September.
Grade 9 students in Wellacre say they are happy their school decided to implement it sooner.
Student Ben Cooney said, “Say I’m at the park, it just makes me realize that I have to make sure you’re not going to scare anyone.”
Harrison Lamont added: “It will change if I ever see something, I will definitely try to intervene now and I know the problems that is causing people.”
The classes are now attracting interest from other schools, some as far away as South Africa, all of which are keen to help boys understand what respect means.
Listen to the latest From The North podcast – “What Can Be Done To Keep Women Safe”