School’s Out: Charting ‘Sex Education’s’ Lasting Impact

School’s Out: Charting 'Sex Education’s' Lasting Impact

After three emotional and heartwarming seasons the fourth and final season of Sex Education landed on Netflix on September 21st.

With millions of viewers across the world, rave reviews, and multiple awards, the show has captured hearts since launching in 2019.

Sex Education may be graduating, but we hope that the show’s legacy will be long-lasting. It has never shied away from talking about the issues facing young people, which are rarely seen on screen. Season four alone spotlights everything from asexuality, anxiety, and grief to positive representation of religious attitudes to sexuality and disabled access. As the series comes to an end we look back at the huge impact it’s had.

Taking difficult conversations into the mainstream

Sex Education brought conversations on sexuality and identity to our screens and the real world, and season four is no different.

Reflecting on the importance of mental health to the series, we’ve partnered with Mind, donating a cardigan worn by Gillian Anderson in the latest season (which was knitted by Olympic gold-medal-winning diver and Sex Ed fan Tom Daley!). Mind will hold a prize draw for the cardigan, with all donations from entrants going towards raising money for projects related to the LGBTQ+ community.

Otis might give his classmates sexual and mental health advice on screen, but off-screen we’re working with charity Brook, who will be distributing Sex Education merch and sexual health and wellbeing advice at freshers fairs across the country.

Launching careers behind and in front of the cameras

The show is full of diverse, nuanced characters with thoughtful stories, played by brilliant actors. We’re proud that it has helped build the careers of many – from Ncuti Gatwa (Eric) being cast as the next Doctor Who, and Connor Swindells (Adam) going on to take a leading role in SAS Rogue Heroes. Both actors also appeared alongside Emma Mackey (Maeve) in the Barbie movie this summer.

Sex Education has helped develop off-screen careers too, providing valuable training opportunities for the next generation of talent in South Wales, where much of the show is filmed. Eleven production trainees joined season four, bringing the total to over sixty trainees who have had their start on the series. Several trainees from earlier seasons returned as full-time crew, helping grow and develop production in Wales.

Spotlighting must visit locations in Wales

Finally, Sex Education has helped us fall in love with many of the beautiful settings and incredible Welsh landscapes shown in the series. We’ve worked with Visit Wales to promote some of these locations, like Otis and Jean’s iconic house in the Wye Valley, so that viewers can experience the magic of Moordale (and now Cavendish College) for themselves.

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