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Ontario Releases Updated Health & Physical Education Curriculum, Parent Resources

Archived News Release

Ontario Releases Updated Health & Physical Education Curriculum, Parent Resources

Promoting the Health and Well-Being of Students

Ministry of Education

Ontario is releasing updated Health and Physical Education curriculum to give students accurate information that will help keep them safe and healthy. The province is also providing parents with resources to help them understand and participate in what will be taught to their children.

Starting September 2015, the updated curriculum will reflect health, safety and well-being realities faced by today's students. Updates to the curriculum include healthy relationships, consent, mental health, online safety and the risks of "sexting." The curriculum has also been updated to be more reflective of Ontario's growing and diverse population.

Resources to inform parents and to support learning at home include:

  • An outline of the new Health and Physical Education curriculum for Grades 1-12.
  • Guides on human development and sexual health part of the curriculum - one for Grades 1-6 and one for Grades 7-12.
  • Quick reference sheets about healthy relationships and consent as well as online safety, including the risks of sexting.

The revision of the Health and Physical Education curriculum is the result of work done through the curriculum consultation, which began in 2007. The review was the most extensive curriculum consultation process ever undertaken by the ministry and involved parents, students, teachers, faculties of education, universities, colleges and numerous stakeholder groups including the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health, The Ontario Public Health Association and the Ontario Healthy Schools Coalition. More than 70 health-related organizations submitted reports for consideration and thousands of people provided feedback.

Quick Facts

  • The Growth and Development section of the elementary Health and Physical Education curriculum has not been updated since 1998 – before the widespread use of social media and smartphones.
  • Studies have shown that girls are entering puberty as early as seven years old, which is significantly earlier than in previous generations.
  • The World Health Organization has found that providing kids with comprehensive sexual health information helps prevent early sexual activity and negative health outcomes.
  • Studies have shown that the vast majority of parents want schools to provide sexual health education.

Background Information

Additional Resources


“We are updating the curriculum to ensure the safety and health of our students. Schools and parents both play an essential and complementary role in supporting student learning — including learning about human development and sexual health. We are listening to parents. That is why we are working with education partners to develop a number of resources for parents and educators about the curriculum and about issues impacting today’s children and youth.”

Liz Sandals

Minister of Education

Media Contacts



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