Schools Secretary Ed Balls has denied the government has done a U-turn in relation to its expectations of those in teacher jobs at faith schools with regards to new sex education regulations.
In a letter to the Guardian newspaper, Mr Balls said that staff in education jobs will teach pupils about all aspects of relationship and sex education, although faith schools will be permitted to highlight their own particular stance on the subject.
Mr Balls said: "Faith schools will not be able to opt out of statutory lessons on sex and relationship education when the legislation comes into effect in September 2011.
"This includes education about contraception and the importance of stable relationships, including marriage and civil partnerships."
He added that staff in teaching jobs
would also be required to adopt a zero-tolerance policy towards homophobic bullying under the new regulations, which come into effect this September.
The government was accused of a U-turn following claims from the Catholic Education Service that faith schools will be permitted to teach sex education according to their own criteria.