Simplifying Science

Consent as a Life Skill

Teach consent as a life skill, not a sex skill. What fabulous advice! Because when we stop and think about it, consent has everything to do with sex and also nothing at all. Consent can impact every interaction you have throughout the day — it’s about respecting someone else’s space not to mention their wishes; it impacts power dynamics and autonomy. Consent, in its purest form, plays out everywhere from the blacktop at recess to the office workplace to, yes, the bedroom. I had never thought about consent in this broader way before reading this piece... and now I will never revert to my very narrow, physical definition. Ed Week, this is, indeed, a BIG IDEA worth sharing.

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In education, we try to play the long game. We lay the foundations for college math in middle school and job skills in kindergarten. But when it comes to teaching kids about consent, we do way too little, way too late. And evidence suggests that what we are doing doesn't give students the skills they need to navigate adulthood.

The last few years have been a wake-up call about the need to start laying that foundation for consent early. I have two…READ MORE