Nick Clegg: 'Tories to blame for lack of progress on sex education'

Nick Clegg has blamed the Tories for the government's lack of progress on the issue of sex education over the last five years. Speaking to Attitude ahead of the general election, the Liberal Democrat leader and Deputy Prime Minister admits that while the sex and relationship education is "incredibly important", the Lib Dems have failed to persuade the Conservative party that it should be made a mandatory requirement in all schools in England and Wales. 5889 Asked why government had failed to make progress on the issue, Mr Clegg says he's "been trying to argue this for five years against the Tories", but that they "just keep whacking it". "You should ask them", he says. "They’ve got this rather odd ideological objection to the idea, because Michael Gove et al. have got this zany belief that if your child goes to an academy or free school they should be taught to a different standard than everyone else. We haven’t been able to persuade him and the Tories that we can make progress, but we will. "It’s such a batty idea that a little boy or girl is taught proper sex education classes in one school but if it’s an academy there’s no such requirement. "We need to have a more grown-up and universal approach with all children – gay or straight – to deal with the challenges of a highly sexualised environment and online world." In a wide-ranging interview ahead of the general election, Attitude speaks to Nick Clegg about a variety of LGBT issues, including the treatment of LGBT asylum seekers and the state of the country's HIV prevention budget. The Lib Dem leader also questions the record of 13 years of Labour government and reveals what he would be doing if he weren't in politics. We also speak to David Cameron, Ed Miliband, Nigel Farage, Natalie Bennett and Nicola Sturgeon ahead of May's vote in the new issue, which also includes interviews with Adam Lambert, David Beckham and Westlife's Mark Feehily. The May issue is available to download to your mobile, iPad or tablet device now, at It will be out in shops from next Wednesday (April 1), and you can also have it delivered directly to your door at adam lamber new jpg More stories: Picture special: Why we're going to miss Zayn Malik 5 thing we've learned from the Will Young album cover