Listening for commissioning: A participatory study exploring young people's experiences, views and preferences of school-based sexual health and school nursing

Kay Aranda, Lester Coleman, Nigel Sherriff, Christopher Cocking, Laetitia Zeeman, Elizabeth Cunningham

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Aims and objectives: To explore the experiences, views and preferences of youngpeople aged 11-19 years regarding school-based sexual health and school nursing toinform commissioning and delivery for one local authority area in England during 2015.Background: Promoting sexual health for young people remains a challenging, evencontroversial, but important public health issue. Concerns regarding accessibility,acceptability and efficacy in school-based sexual health and school nursing are evidentin the literature. Additionally, a complex public health policy context now governsthe funding, provision and delivery of sexual health and school nursing, whichpotentially presents further challenges.Design: A qualitative, participatory design was used to explore sexual health andschool nursing. Data were generated from 15 focus groups (n = 74), with young peopleaged 11-19 years, in educational-based settings in one local authority area in England.Results: The resultant themes of visibility in relation to sexual health education andschool nursing revealed both the complex tensions in designing and deliveringacceptable and appropriate sexual health services for young people and the significanceof participatory approaches.Conclusion: Our study shows the importance of participatory approaches in workingwith young people to clearly identify what they want and need in relation tosexual health. The findings also confirm the ways in which school-based sexualhealth remains challenging but requires a theoretical and conceptual shift. This weargue must be underpinned by participatory approaches.Relevance to clinical practice: School nurses have always had a significant role toplay in promoting positive sexual health for young people and they are exceptionallywell placed to challenge the risk-based cultures that frequently dominate schoolbasedsexual health. A shift of debates and practices towards the promotion of positivesexual health cultures though previously argued for now requires the activeengagement and involvement of young people.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)375-385
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of Clinical Nursing
Volume27
Issue number1-2
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 3 Aug 2017

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Bibliographical note

This is the peer reviewed version of the following article: Aranda K, Coleman L, Sherriff NS, Cocking C, Zeeman L, Cunningham L. Listening for commissioning: A participatory study exploring young people's experiences, views and preferences of school-based sexual health and school nursing. J Clin Nurs. 2017;27(1-2):375–385, which has been published in final form at https://doi.org/10.1111/jocn.13936. This article may be used for non-commercial purposes in accordance with Wiley Terms and Conditions for Self-Archiving.

Keywords

  • focus groups
  • health improvement
  • participatory
  • qualitative
  • school nursing
  • sex education
  • sexual health
  • young people

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