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Sweeping changes will be made to sex education programmes in Quebec schools from September 2018 iStock

News that sexual education will become mandatory in all schools in the Canadian province of Quebec has received a mixed reception.

Canada's education minister Sébastien Proulx said that from next September, children in Quebec will be taught mandatory sex education lessons at every grade from kindergarten a decade after removing it from the curriculum.

The move was made following a two-year trial which urged all teachers to integrate some sort of sex education into their syllabus alongside other subjects.

More than one million children will now have a similar curriculum to those that already exist to students in British Columbia and Ontario, where parents threatened to pull their children out of school when the changes were introduced in 2015.

Proulx told reporters in Quebec City: "I know it's not an easy subject, I know these are sensitive questions, but we now have a societal response to a societal issue, and this is what we're going to do," reports CBC.

Nathalie Legault, president of Quebec's order of sexologists, also praised the decision. She told Radio-Canada: "We have to give the project a chance to unfold before we criticise it too much."

Under the programme, elementary schools in the province will have to devote five hours per year to teaching sexual education. In kindergarten, children will learn about the basics of what is involved in making a baby when they reach the age of five.

The children will also be taught about the different type of families, including those involving same-sex couples.

Donatella Garofalo, a Montreal mother of a 10-year-old boy, told the Canadian Press she was worried about the impact these lessons will have on young children.

She said: "The problem with the government programme is it focuses on a too young of a crowd. This has nothing to do with religion. This has to do with age-appropriate material."

Denis Simard, president of the teacher's union in Quebec City, also fears the decision to make sex education lessons mandatory has not been thought through. He added: "In principle, I am thinking offering sexual education courses is important, but this is being done a bit too fast."

Currently, only around 200 schools in Quebec are teaching the material which will be made mandatory next year to more than 3000 schools.

Among some of the lessons children will be taught will be consent and what constitutes sexual assault at age 13 and 14; homophobia and sexism by the age of 12 and warning 10 and 11-year-olds about the dangers of using the internet and how to protect themselves online.

Lisa Trimble, a lecturer specialising in sexual education, told CBC the change in the system is a "human rights and a public health issue".

She added: "Just having one [a sexual education curriculum] is an enormous change.

"There is a lot of misinformation and panic that gets cultivated when sex education starts to be something that we talk about in schools."