For the first time, the controversial (non) sex education system that has been in place in States like Texas, the “Virginity Rules” and 700 similar abstinence education programs are losing their grasp on schools. Eleven state health departments rejected abstinence education this year, while legislatures in Colorado, Iowa and Washington passed laws that could end, or at least limit, its presence in public schools. For more on the possible end to this ineffective money sucking school program, read on.
It seems that we’ve been sharing about sex education a lot these days on Erotic News. I’m glad we have the chance to educate people on the ineffective sex ed methods along with the ones that do work.
What is abstinence only sex ed?
Here’s what wikipedia says about Abstinence-only sex education: It is a form of sex education that teaches abstinence from sex, and often excludes many other types of sexual and reproductive health education, particularly regarding birth control and safe sex. This type of sex education promotes sexual abstinence until marriage and avoids discussion of use of contraceptives. Comprehensive sex education, by contrast, covers the use of contraceptives as well as abstinence.
Evidence does not support the use of abstinence only sex education. It has been found to be ineffective in decreasing HIV risk in the developed world, and does not decrease rates of unplanned pregnancy.
Wait, so the government may be ending something that doesn’t work?
Maybe there’s hope for America yet. As a nurse at a sexual health clinic, I can say that it’s far better to have (and know how to use) condoms and not need them, than to need them and not have them.
In leaving abstinence education, many states are making a stand and embracing comprehensive sex education programs. Comprehensive sex ed discusses contraception beyond the failure rates and have a better scientific grounding. New laws in Colorado, Iowa and Washington state that sex education must be based on research or science (great news!).
How bad does abstinence education perform?
A comprehensive study of abstinence education found no sign that it delayed a teenager’s sexual debut. And, after a five time increase in federal appropriations, abstinence programs in June received the first cut in financing from the Senate appropriations committee since 2001.
For some reason future funding is still in question (why would they continue funding something that doesn’t work?!). A full $176 million in federal support has survived several early maneuvers in the House, and the full House plans to debate the issue July 18 as part of the proposed Health and Human Services budget.
Here’s hoping common sense rules and abstinence sex education is cut out forever. Considering that this form of education completely excludes gay teens who need to know how to use protection and don’t even have to option for “waiting until marriage” in many states.