Schools can play a crucial role helping to end the culture of sexual harassment and violence – but how? Natasha Eeles offers some practical reflections and suggestions

In the past few weeks the UK has had its eyes opened to the urgent need to challenge the seemingly harmless attitudes towards women and girls that contribute to a culture within which gender-based violence is normalised and even accepted; a culture from which, unfortunately, schools are far from exempt.

Keeping our young people safe and healthy (both physically and mentally) means ensuring they have the right spaces to learn about and discuss these issues. Terms such as “gender-based” or “sexual” violence can be challenging and daunting, even extreme, particularly when it comes to discussions with and about pupils.

But, as testimonies from the Everyone’s Invited movement have shown, young people are not protected from this violence and it is vital we move towards a preventative as opposed to reactionary approach.

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