Parent orientated sex education for pre-school children

Campbell, Joan (2001-03)

Thesis (M Social Work)--Stellenbosch University, 2001.

Thesis

ENGLISH ABSTRACT: The aim of the study was to present guidelines for the composition of a parent orientated sex education programme for pre-school children. An exploratory study was undertaken to describe and investigate the nature and extent of parental sex education to pre-school children. The investigation was done by first exploring existing research literature and describing it. The empirical study was based upon both the literature study and mothers' opinions on sex education. Pre-school children are disproportionately !ll0re likely to be sexually abused with devastating consequences which result in behavioural and emotional problems throughout their lives. The ultimate responsibility of prevention of child sexual abuse should be with the parent. However, two problems persist. Firstly, parents are often the perpetrators and therefore it is not justified to leave the responsibility solely to the parents. Secondly, parents who want to teach their children prevention strategies often lack the skills and knowledge. Therefore, the concept of a prevention structure in which the child can live and find support should be put into practice by the school. Prevention strategies should include sex education, a neutral home environment and a safe environment for disclosure of sexual abuse. This prevention structure should include the teacher, the social worker and the parent. These three components should support each other to implement an atmosphere of prevention and healthy sexual development. Linking and inter-dependence are important because there is always a possibility that one of the participants may be corrupt. Social workers should provide an effective basis for a personal safety programme to parents which should be supported and facilitated by schools. Training parents to become sex educators encourages better parent-child communication, builds the family support network, and has an impact on the ability of the family to deal more positively with sexual concerns. This does not only result in the prevention of sexual abuse but also contributes to the healthy sexual functioning, development and understanding of the sexuality of pre-school children. Through parent orientated sex education, parents can also dispel sexual myths and misinformation that their preschool children gain from peers and other sources. Despite the increasing public awareness devoted to sexual abuse and the advantage of sex education, a formal prevention education structure has not yet been implemented for pre-school children in South Africa. The first objective of this study was to describe and investigate the extent of parental sex education presented to pre-school children. The second objective was to investigate the acceptability of a sex education programme for pre-school children. The third objective was to describe the physical and sexual boundaries existing in the home environments of parents of pre-school children and finally to determine the sexual behaviours of pre-school children, which parents regard as acceptable. The main conclusions, based on the findings of the study, indicated that parents were in favour of sex education for pre-school children and that they require more information which would empower them to sex educate their pre-school children at home. They were also in favour of a classroom-based sex education programme. In conclusion it is recommended that a sex education programme is to be implemented at pre-schools for parents of pre-school children, as well as a classroom based sex education and a personal safety programme for pre-school children.

AFRIKAANSE OPSOMMING: Die doel van die navorsing is om moontlike riglyne vir 'n ouer-georiënteerde seksopvoedingsprogram vir pre-primêre kinders saam te stel. 'n Verkennende studie is onderneem om die omvang en aard van ouer-georiënteerde seksopvoeding vir pre-primêre kinders te ondersoek. Verder is bestaande navorsingsliteratuur bestudeer en beskryf. Die empiriese ondersoek wat daarop volg, is gebaseer op sowel die literatuurstudie as moeders se menings oor seksvoorligting. Pre-primêre kinders het 'n groter kans om seksueel gemolesteer te word wat kan lei tot die ervaring van emosionele- en gedragsprobleme, met vernietigende gevolge vir die res van hul lewens. Die uiteindelike verantwoordelikheid om die kind teen molestering te beskerm, berus by die ouers. Dit skep egter twee probleme. Ten eerste is die ouer dikwels self die oortreder en daarom kan die verantwoordelikheid nie uitsluitlik by die ouer berus nie. Tweedens, is die ouers wat wel seksopvoeding aan hul kinders wil bied, dikwels weens 'n gebrek aan kennis en vaardighede, onbevoeg om dit te doen. Dit is daarom die skool se verantwoordelikheid om 'n voorkomende struktuur te skep waarin die kind kan leef en ondersteuning kan vind. 'n Voorkomende strategie moet seksvoorligting, 'n neutrale leefruimte sowel as 'n veilige omgewing vir die bekendmaking van seksuele molestering insluit. Hierdie voorkomende struktuur moet die onderwyser, die maatskaplike werker en die ouer betrek. Hierdie drie komponente moet mekaar ondersteun om "n atmosfeer van voorkoming en gesonde seksuele ontwikkeling te implimenteer. Aangesien die integriteit van die partye nie gewaarborg kan word nie, is noue skakeling en interafhanklikheid van die drie komponente belangrik. Maatskaplike werkers behoort "n effektiewe persoonlike veiligheidsprogram, wat deur die skool ondersteun en gefasiliteer word, aan die ouers te voorsien. Ouers as seksvoorligters bevorder die kommunikasie tussen ouer en kind, verstewig die ondersteuningsnetwerk van die gesin en ontwikkel die vermoë om seksuele aangeleenthede openlik te hanteer. Gevolglik word seksuele molestering voorkom en gesonde seksuele funksionering bevorder. Die ouer verkry ook insig in die seksuele ontwikkeling van die pre-primêre kind. Deur middel van ouer-georiënteerde seksvoorliging, kan ouers mites en verkeerde inligting, wat dikwels deur die portuurgroep oorgedra word, regstel. Ten spyte van die toenemende mediadekking en bewuswording van die voordeel van seksopvoeding, is daar nog geen formele opvoedkundige voorkomende veiligheidsprogram in Suid-Afrika geïmplementeer nie. Die eerste doelwit van die studie was om die omvang en aard van pre-primêre kinders se seksuele opvoeding te ondersoek. Die tweede doelwit was om ouers se aanvaarding van seksvoorligting van pre-primêre kinders te ondersoek; die derde doelwit was om die fisiese en seksuele grense in die huislike omgewing te ondersoek en laastens, om aanvaarbare seksuele gedrag van pre-primêre kinders te ondersoek. Daar word tot die gevolgtrekking gekom dat ouers wel ten gunste is van ouergeoriënteerde seksvoorligting vir pre-primêre kinders en dat hulle die behoefte het aan leiding om dit te doen. Die ouers is ook ten gunste van die aanbieding van seksvoorligting in die klaskamer. Daar word aanbeveel dat 'n veiligheidsprogram, wat 'n ouer-georiënteerde seksvoorligtingsprogram vir ouers van pre-primêre kinders, sowel as seksvoorligting in die klas behels, in skole geïmplimenteer moet word.

Please refer to this item in SUNScholar by using the following persistent URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10019.1/52393
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