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The Importance of Sex Education and Sexual Health

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Even in 2019 the conversation of sex, sexual behavior and sex education remains a taboo. The importance of sex education goes beyond the point of students having sex, but allows for understanding of sex health, sexual abuse and many other topics beside putting a condom on a banana. A comprehensive sex education program will educate youth on healthy sexual habits and the importance of consent which in recent times has been a large issue. The conversation of sexual abuse, assault, sexually transmitted infections and diseases needs to be had so our kids can be prepared and more willing to talk when situations do arise. Schools should not only have but require comprehensive sex education programs to inform students that whether sexually active or not, sex education is in a way a preventative measure which creates an open dialect for students to understand their bodies and protect them. Comprehensive sex education programs should be just as important as a student knowing how to add and subtract because sex will effect many children before they even know how to add or subtract.

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It has been concluded that school districts where “sex education curriculum is nonexistent or teach abstinence have rising teen pregnancies and sexually transmitted infections (Burns 2017).” Information such as this proves that comprehensive sex education programs in schools are a necessity and need to be created for the safety of our students. Many say that sex education will encourage children to have sex but based off the data they’re having sex even without sex education so why not at least create programs to promote safe sex.

Based on the information researched I found several articles discuss and identify the importance of inclusive and comprehensive sex education programs in schools. Among the articles found one article discusses the effects of comprehensive sex education in schools and how once the programs are implemented what changes are seen. The article focuses on an evaluation of comprehensive sex education in Chicago public schools and the actual implementation of sex education in their public schools (Jarpe-Ratner 2019). Focusing on ninth graders the article examines not only the students, but the teachers experiences as well. This article stands out because its findings include what students wanted from sex education programs. The student’s expectations include information on LGBTQ+ curriculum along with teachers tone in creating a “safe space (Jarpe-Ratner 2019).” The research from this article was most compelling because not only does it tell us that students want sex education, but they have specific needs they want met by that education. This research puts an emphasis on the idea of autonomy which is necessary when having the discussion of sex education.

While I am aware many people are against the idea of sex education my findings for why are difficult to empathize with due to sex education promotion of autonomy and health. Many of the opposing arguments are solely based on religion and misogyny which in my opinion do not take into account autonomy and health.

As for my personal views I do believe schools should have comprehensive sex education programs. Comprehensive sex education programs in schools create awareness for students who may choose to engage in sexual activities. Comprehensive sex education allows students o know that they have autonomy over their bodies and the most important thing about sex is physical and mentally healthy along with emotionally stability. Comprehensive sex education reassures children that the hormones and things they may be feeling are natural for all humans while also encouraging them to practice safe and responsible decision making. These personal views are in fact consistent with the research.

Overall, I was surprised so much information on people pro- comprehensive sex education especially within public schools. Finding out this information lets me know that society is attempting to progress and allow people not matter how young to have control over their bodies and decisions. Comprehensive sex education will do more than educate students on sex, but allow them freedom to decide who they are and reassure them that it is ok to be curious.

 

 

Reference Page

  1. Beh, H. G. (2015). The right to comprehensive sex education. In S. M. Coupet & E. Marrus (Eds.), Children, sexuality, and the law. (pp. 163–185). New York, NY: New York University Press. https://doi-org.ezproxy.lib.uh.edu/10.18574/nyu/9780814723852.003.0007
  2. Burns, F. N. (2017). A community’s perception of pregnancy and sexually transmitted infections and prevention programs. Dissertation Abstracts International Section A: Humanities and Social Sciences. ProQuest Information & Learning. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com.ezproxy.lib.uh.edu/login.aspx?direct=true&db=psyh&AN=2016-53062-086&site=ehost-live
  3. Jarpe-Ratner, E. (2019). From policy to implementation: An evaluation of comprehensive sex education in Chicago public schools. Dissertation Abstracts International Section A: Humanities and Social Sciences. ProQuest Information & Learning. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com.ezproxy.lib.uh.edu/login.aspx?direct=true&db=psyh&AN=2019-41130-265&site=ehost-live
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