n Southern African Review of Education with Education with Production - Challenges facing life orientation educators in the delivery of sexuality education in South African schools

Volume 24 Number 1
  • ISSN : 1563-4418


The life orientation (LO) learning area provides the primary vehicle in which comprehensive sexuality education, including reproductive health information, is delivered in South African schools in accordance with the Department of Basic Education’s National Strategic Plan for HIV, STIs and TB 2012–2016, and Policy on HIV, STIs and TB, launched in 2017. This paper explores issues surrounding the implementation of LO in secondary schools from the perspective of LO educators and LO heads of department. Findings suggest that LO is not being implemented and delivered optimally due to constraints at the individual, interpersonal, school, district and community levels. Furthermore, resource shortages introduce significant variation in terms of the quality of education delivered between high- and low-resourced schools, whilst the expanded role and responsibility of LO educators in supporting learners’ psychosocial needs in addition to academic development, highlights the importance of adequate training and institutional support at all levels.

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