The importance of listening to youth voice: relationships and sex education

Alan Walters Building - University of Birmingham, Room G11 - Ground Floor - Alan Walters
Friday 4 November 2022 (13:00-17:00)


Bringing together professionals and young people to explore the importance of listening to youth voice on relationships and sex education.

Join Dr Sophie King-Hill, youth professionals, young people and researchers for an enlightening discussion on the importance of listening to young people’s views on relationships and sex education. This event is co-designed by young people and will provide a unique opportunity for them to share their thoughts on a subject that is rarely in the spotlight.

We welcome you for an afternoon of taboo-busting talks and debate, followed by time for light refreshments and networking. Art produced by young people on the theme of being heard will also be on display to view and discuss. This is a great opportunity for interested members of the public to learn more about this important issue and visit the University of Birmingham campus in Edgbaston.

Light refreshments will be available and free online registration is required. 

The session will proceed as follows:

  • Introduction from Dr Sophie King-Hill (Senior Fellow, University of Birmingham): ‘Youth voice in relationships and sex – where are we now’
  • David Russel (Community Safety & Justice Manager at Midlothian Council & previous early intervention Senior Practitioner for third sector children services): ‘Harmful sexual behaviour in children and young people: why we need to listen to youth voice’
  • Scarlett: ‘A 13-year-olds perspective on sexual harassment in schools’
  • Jonny Davis (Mantality society lead and University of Birmingham student): ‘Spirituality and Masculinity: Its practical relevance. Exploring the relationship of spirituality and masculinity and its significant relevance amongst young men and teenagers’

Refreshment break

  • Fiona Lee (SEN lead teacher): ‘The right to relationships and sex education for young people with verbal and non-verbal special educational needs’
  • Abby Gilsenan (University of Birmingham PhD researcher and research assistant on the sibling sexual abuse project): ‘Exploring young women’s experiences of Relationships and Sex Education in Catholic contexts: the importance of listening to young voices’
  • Rebecca Jennings (Lead for Raise Education): ’Raising awareness in Relationships and Sex education in schools’
  • Sarah Simons (Participation Coordinator Brook) and Nick Dunne (Head of business Development Brook): 'The impact of youth voice: an overview of Participation at Brook'

Refreshment break

  • Bec Tigue (Director of the University of Birmingham Training School): ‘What happens when we listen – using students as agents of change’
  • A symposium of youth speakers aged 14-18: Topics to include - changing school policy, period poverty, internet relationships, peer pressure and hypersexuality, the danger of the generational digital gap, LGBTQ+ issues in RSE, and the links between queerness, people of colour and religion.
  • Summary from Dr Sophie King-Hill

Talks will be followed by a professional networking session with refreshments.

This event is part of the ESRC Festival of Social Science. Spanning the months of October and November a range of interactive virtual and physical events will be free and open to the public.

Culture and collections

Schools, institutes and departments

Services and facilities