Labour plans for sex education lessons beginning when children are just five are “a disgrace,” said UKIP deputy leader Paul Nuttall.
“Children deserve their innocence, which is precious and already under attack from every direction. It needs to be protected not defiled by those tasked with their care.
“If Tristram Hunt thinks this is a progressive move he is totally wrong and his justification that it will help tackle homophobic bullying is just politically correct nonsense.
“He speaks of “age appropriate” sex education, well quite frankly it is not appropriate at all at such a tender age. It cannot be right that one minute they are in nursery happily playing and the next they are behind a desk being taught about adult sexual behaviour,” said Mr Nuttall, the party’s Education spokesman and North West MEP.
“This proposal is just further evidence of how out of touch Labour is with the families they purport to represent and a very good reason not to vote for them.
“Rather than helping tackle problems of domestic violence and rape in future years, as given as another woolly reason for introduction, it is going to confuse and worry these little children.
“Currently such lessons are only given to children of secondary school age and that is the way is should remain. It is the preserve of parents who think their children are ready for basic sex education at an earlier age to inform them.
“I am also appalled about Ofsted inspectors quizzing pupils as young as four about their knowledge of sexuality. It is an outrageous intrusion. If an on-line stranger asked such questions they would be arrested,” he added.
Parents can withdraw children from sex education lessons, apart from those that are part of the core science curriculum, but under Labour’s plans, all state-funded schools would be required to provide sex and relationships classes.
And academies and free schools would lose their right to opt out.