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Essex schoolboys to be 'taught how to chat-up women'

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In January, Chase High School in Essex will be introducing a mentoring scheme which aims to boost the self-confidence of boys who lack positive male role models. They will be taught how to “chat-up girls” amid fears pornography has distorted their view of women.

GradesOn specific "man days," male teachers of the school will give classes on various life skills, including how to shave, save money, ask a girl out and treat a woman. They will take part in football tournaments, have golf lessons, and learn about camping and survival skills to encourage team-building.

Headteacher Victoria Overy said: ”I have a school full of brilliant male role models and it would be a shame to waste that. This is for everybody, but we have got our target group of lads who really need to be choosing a different path from their fathers or brothers."

Girls, on the other hand, will benefit from a parallel programme about self perception. They will work with female teachers and focus on finance management and career aspirations.

“Sadly, through such easy access to pornography, the boys’ view of women has been skewed,” argues Overy.

“Sex education often only deals with how not to get pregnant and violent relationships. We want this scheme to teach pupils details on establishing relationships and how to end them without breaking hearts.”

“The scheme is still in the planning phase but will focus heavily on children’s self esteem.”

Kate Fallon, general secretary of the Association of Educational Psychologists, said: "Many young men are exposed to unhealthy and inappropriate images of and views about women and men and their perceptions of each other. If those attitudes and images are challenged by adults and peers in the everyday lives of those young men then they can still develop healthy attitudes towards women.

"It sounds as if it could be a very sensible addition as part of a 'holistic' approach to the education of young men and women."

Public response to the scheme appears to be divided.

Some are worried that it may unwittingly focus too heavily on heterosexual relationships, whilst others have suggested that it encourages gender separatism rather than interaction.

“What about girls getting lessons on how to treat males? Same goes!” writes Adam Kendall-Stokes.

Libby Sampford says that it’s “refreshing to see a school care about character building and not just simply the grades they receive at the end of year 11.

“Education should be about producing well rounded people as well as educated.”




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