In England, School Watch-Dog Group Lauds ‘Lads’ Magazines

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From The Times Online
By Devika Bhat

“Lads” magazines are a valuable source of information for teenage boys learning about sex, the education watchdog said today.

A study from Ofsted claimed that teenagers were turning to weekly publications such as Zoo and Nuts to learn about the facts of life to fill the void left by parents, who are often failing to give sufficient support.

Although lads' magazines were judged by school inspectors to be sometimes explicit and sexist, they were also deemed to be a “very positive” source of advice for young people, many of whom felt their parents lacked the knowledge and skills to talk to them directly about sensitive issues.

A number of students voiced concern that parents and teachers alike would only address sex and relationship matters when it was “too late” and they had reached puberty or already started experiencing sexual desire.

“Parents often seek to approach personal, social and health issues with their children tangentially, if at all,” the report said.

Tango’s Take
First of all, the name of three of these magazines are: Load, Stuff and Nuts. Let’s not mince words about the nature of these periodicals. They’re selling sex and good, sound advice is just a by-product. Enough of the PSA. It’s great that between the spreads of babes and the spreads of cars that some education takes place. A number of these books have sex advice columns and other editorial features on sexual health, tips/ techniques and safety. These mags are valuable because they handle matters straight on, using the vernacular and unflinchingly. Parents and educators often approach the subject a bit more gingerly and have a tendency to use either cutesy or technical terminology (“Mom, is the hoo-hoo my part or his part?). It’s better these teens getting their information in print from reliable magazines than from frightened grown-ups, uninformed siblings or, God forbid, Wikipedia.

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