New guidance on addressing misogyny, toxic masculinity and social media influence through PSHE education

Jan 12, 2023 5:34:50 PM
Schools are increasingly concerned about the impact of online influencers that promote misogynistic and other deeply problematic ideas. This content presents a significant safeguarding challenge given it can be permissive of: discriminatory behaviours and attitudes (including racist, antisemitic, homophobic, transphobic, and misogynistic attitudes); sexual harassment and abuse; abuse in relationships; and victim-blaming narratives.

This all comes at an age when young people may be particularly insecure and vulnerable to persuasive messages. For example, much of this content taps into insecurities about body image and agency. The focus on money, success and power also plays on financial and status insecurities that may lead to risky and even illegal behaviours.

PSHE education can play a crucial role in tackling the issue as it develops understanding about healthy relationships, respect, self-esteem, digital literacy, economic wellbeing, critical thinking, and recognising and challenging negative influences. And, importantly, when taught well it explores the links between these areas within the context of a coherent, spiral curriculum.

Our new guidance — available as an online article and downloadable PDF — provides practical tips on areas of the PSHE / RSHE curriculum to focus on and what resources to use. 

Read full guidance & download PDF

What’s covered?

  • Understanding the issues and risks
  • Teaching about these topics safely
  • Addressing these issues at KS1-2
  • Developing this learning at KS3-4
  • Choosing the right resources