SHFPACT’s Sexual Health Education Program, funded by ACT Government Education & Training Directorate, promotes and supports the delivery of comprehensive sexuality and relationships education and social safety skills to children and young people with a disability in the Canberra community.
SHFPACT understands this works best when schools, family and community work together to the needs of the school age children and young people they care for.
While previously SHFPACT educators have provided a high degree of in-class education directly to groups of students with disabilities in schools, the service is now focused on supporting and assisting teachers, LSAs and other assistants, parents, carers, youth workers, support and welfare staff through the provision of a range of professional development and support activities that provide positive and useful support in developing and delivering effective education programs about relationships, sexuality, reproductive and sexual health, and social safety. We encourage this partnership approach so that new knowledge and skills can be reinforced holistically in all areas of students’ lives.
People with disabilities attain the maximum sexual and reproductive health possible, within a framework that promotes and protects their human rights, supports community participation and inclusion.
Deliver a high quality suite of responsive services for children and young people with a disability in ACT Schools, and their parents, teachers, teaching assistants, and carers in the areas of sexuality and relationships, sexual health and development, and social safety education.
Fees and Costs
The program and services are free of charge to schools and delivered under a contract with ACT Department of Education & Training. Funded service availability is highly demanded and limited.
Fees apply to ‘In class sessions’ only where a SHFPACT educator has to deliver the program Additional fee-for-service training and education can be negotiated as required.
Where program support is requested, the ultimate beneficiaries of the service must be the children or young people with a disability. SHFPACT educators will seek information about the range of student needs, including relevant diagnosis information where available, in assessing this criterion. The service is available for students in Special Schools, Learning Support Units, Integration Programs and Autism-specific Units, and is open to all ACT schools.
The program focuses on supporting teachers to deliver comprehensive sexuality and respectful relationships education to their students. Materials and outlines of your schools/classrooms current sexuality education curriculum, if there is one, may be requested by SHFPACT educators to help shape the best service support (draft format is sufficient).
Evaluation is essential to any successful program so that it can improve and become more successful. The Program will require brief reflection/evaluation by teachers after each session, as well as at the 3, 6 or 12 months after completing the program to assess the continuing impact. Session evaluations should take no more than 5 minutes while post-program evaluations may take 45 minutes to an hour.
All programs are tailored to the need of those making the request.
SHFPACT offers the following service options:
Face to face planning with an educator around the core content of a sexuality and relationships education program that aims to be both developmentally supportive to the needs of the student as well as supporting the expectations of the ACT National Curriculum. SHFPACT educators can showcase resources, provide session examples and discuss any questions or concerns that may come up along the way.
Teacher Professional Development
SHFPACT educators can deliver training and education for teachers in the ACT on a range of content topics that come under the umbrella of Sexuality and Relationships Education. This can be tailored to the request of the school or based on existing programs that SHFPACT delivers in the community (for example the ‘Pimples and Periods’ or ‘Whiskers and Wet Dreams’ programs about Puberty).
One-on-one sessions are available with an educator for a student who needs additional support and information in regards to sexuality and respectful relationships education. These sessions can take place on school campus (during school term) or at SHFPACT. Individual programs can range from 1-6 weeks
Co-Facilitated Group Education
(Only available after Curriculum Support and/or Teacher PD session)
SHFPACT educators collaboratively develop and co-facilitate classroom learning activities with students together with teachers/assistants. Over the course of delivery of a program developed collaborative, teachers/assistants will progresses from co-facilitated sessions to solely delivering lessons to their students.
In Class Sessions
SHFPACT can deliver sessions in the classroom to students in class groups. These sessions do incur a fee. Please contact SHFPACT for further information.
Parent Information Session
An open discussion covering topics such as
- What is Sexuality and Relationships education?
- Why does Sexuality and Relationships education matter?
- How to talk to your child about Sexuality and Relationships topics such as respectful relationships and consent
- Hints and tips on where to go for further advice and information
Topics covered in the program
Comprehensive sexuality and relationships education covers a broad range of different topics including, but not limited to -
- Body Awareness
- Public & Private - body parts, places and behaviours
- Friendships & Relationships
- Puberty Issues
- Managing Menstruation
- Managing Wet Dreams
- Social Safety
- Sexual Responsibility
- Safe Sex & Contraception
- The Law (including harassment and assault)
- Personal care
- Asking for help
SHFPACT identifies students with a disability as a priority group for services due to increased needs for adapted/modified information resources and learning experiences to ensure the same or similar educational outcomes as their peers without disability; and because of the increased vulnerability to social exclusion, sexual exploitation and abuse experienced by many people with a disability.
Due to the large number of requests for services, SHFPACT has developed a system of prioritising the work we do in order to give maximum overall benefit to the community.
The two main functions are to support schools to effectively deliver sexual health and relationships education through provision of curriculum development support and co-facilitated group education, and to support individual students with one-on-one support.