Lithuanian Education and Science Minister Audronė Pitrėnienė plans to approve a new sexuality education programme which has drawn criticism from NGOs for its conservatism and focus on abstinence.
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The working group drafting the programme which should be taught in Lithuania's secondary schools agreed on a compromise version of the programme on Wednesday.

"There are no quick results in education. Do you think it suffices to adopt the programme today and you will see results in a month's time? That is not so. This is quite a lengthy process. It took almost ten years to work out the programme alone," the minister told reporters.

"Let's wait at least until today's first-graders finish secondary school. We will be able to speak about a full picture in 12 years' time," she said.

Pitrėnienė still plans to consult the Education Council before signing the programme, but says that she sees no reason not to sign the document, which was approved by the working group with 16 votes in favour and three abstentions.

The draft program, which was unveiled to the public last spring, has drawn criticism for superficial treatment of sexuality-related issues that are important to young people, paying too much attention to the Church's doctrines and ignoring reality.

Earlier this year, the minister was urged in a petition to appoint a new working group to draft the programme.

Deputy Education and Science Minister Natalja Istomina, chairwoman of the working group, said on Wednesday that the approved programme differed considerably from the criticized version.

BNS
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