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Sexual Education in Schools

1. Sexual education in the schools is very controversial. I myself remember a day where all of the fourth grade girls were called down the auditorium for a special presentation on our development and menstruation. I also recall having to sit through a few classes of "the blue book" in fifth grade and "the purple book" in sixth grade. These were horrifying experiences to me, I was warned about them from the older children and, when it was finally my turn, I covered up the pictures while sitting embarrassed in class. Despite my personal experiences, the textbook says on page 364 that the best sex education starts before high school, even if the children are not ready or sexually active. (Being a late bloomer, I was especially not ready to learn about sex and biology.)
Schools often require a signed permission slip from the parents for a child to participate in sex education in school, often stating that if they do not agree to it that they promised to provide the information themselves. What are your thoughts on sex education programs in schools? Should schools be required to promote safe sex and provide condoms? Abstinence? Or should it be up to the parents to teach their children the "birds and the bees?" How would you design, what you consider, the most effective sex education program (Specifically to reduce the number of early sexual encounters, sexual partners, and teenage pregnancies and the spread of STIs)?

2. According to page 348 in the text adolescence is suppose to be the time the question "Who am I?" is answered, through Erikson's Psychosocial Development. Is there negative consequences for an individual who hasn't figured out who they are? Identity foreclosure and moratorium are great ways to stop the confusion but are there long term effects from this? Is there a way to help an individual with this process?

3. Abortions are taboo, a seemingly negative affect of unprotected sex. The fear of HIV/AIDS infection is an realistic fear for our youth. While teen pregnancy has dropped since 1960, half of the U.S. population will have sexual intercourse before the age of 16 (pg. 364). Only 20 percent of teenage couples use the pill and a condom for sexual intercourse. That is a very low amount of couples practicing safe sex, while using just one of those contraceptives is considered "safe sex", the safest way to practice is using both the pill and a condom. At what age do you think kids should learn what safe sex is? Do you think it affects at what age children start practicing sexual acts?

4. On page 368 in the text under gender difference in suicide it gives the story about Bill who committed suicide with his fathers gun. This type of thing happens all the time, the child gets a hold of a gun in the house then takes their own life with it or takes another's life. These are all tragic stories. A kid that I graduated high school with did this upstairs of his parents house. The new gun laws talk about not giving guns out to people with criminal pasts or that have mental illness problems. But the question is how can we prevent these children form getting a hold of guns, and why do you believe that the warning signs of suicide are ignored until its too late?

5. On page 353 the text states, "that adolescence is often characterized as a period of waning adult influence", also on page 377 "each generation prefers to learn things for themselves". Given the fact that adolescents are primarily working to emerge as individuals, in what ways might an older relative or concerned adult approach a younger adult to be encouraging and helpful, and have the young adult be receptive?

6. On page 338 in the text the topic of entering a new school emerges. The text says "the transition from one school to another often impairs a young person's ability to function and learn. Changing schools just when growth spurt is occuring and sexual characteristics are developing is bound to create stress." While I was a teenager I remember moving and having a very hard time transitioning with the school and making friends. Have you ever moved to a new school? What was the hardest part?

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1. Sexual education in the schools is very controversial. I myself remember a day where all of the fourth grade girls were called down the auditorium for a special presentation on our development and menstruation. I also recall having to sit through a few classes of "the blue book" in fifth grade and "the purple book" in sixth grade. These were horrifying experiences to me, I was warned about them from the older children and, when it was finally my turn, I covered up the pictures while sitting embarrassed in class. Despite my personal experiences, the textbook says on page 364 that the best sex education starts before high school, even if the children are not ready or sexually active. (Being a late bloomer, I was especially not ready to learn about sex and biology.)

Schools often require a signed permission slip from the parents for a child to participate in sex education in school, often stating that if they do not agree to it that they promised to provide the information themselves. What are your thoughts on sex education programs in schools? Should schools be required to promote safe sex and provide condoms? Abstinence? Or should it be up to the parents to teach their children the "birds and the bees?" How would you design, what you consider, the most effective sex education program (Specifically to reduce the number of early sexual encounters, sexual partners, and teenage pregnancies and the spread of STIs)?

A. According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, "by the time young people graduate from high school, almost two thirds have had sex. Nearly 40 percent of sexually active students did not use a condom the last time they had sex, and one in five drank alcohol or took drugs before their last sexual intercourse" (1). Adolescents and teens today are more sexually active than in the past. It is reported that young people between the ages of 13 and 24 account for approximately 18 percent of all new HIV diagnoses. Teens and young adults also have the highest rates of STD's of any age group, and three in ten young women become pregnant before age 20.

Today it is not a matter of whether or not a child is ready to learn about "the birds and the bees", it is now a matter of life and death that they learn about "safe sex" and "sex education". So many times, parents do not teach their child what they actually need to know. They teach them that they should abstain from sex until marriage, or in some cases they may say "if you are going to have sex, be safe", but they do not go into detail about what safe sex actually is and why it is so vital that they have safe sex or preferably abstain. I personally do not feel that the schools should provide condoms; however, students do need to know that there are places they can go to get them free of charge; however, they also need to completely understand that even though they are using "protection" there is nothing that is 100% effective against these types of diseases and pregnancy except abstaining (1). Because children are at school a big majority of their time, and in many cases, they respect the adults that are in teaching and administrative positions, school is often the best place for them to learn about sex education and the consequences of their actions when they choose to become sexually active. They need to understand what can actually happen and in many cases does.

2. According to page 348 in ...

Solution Summary

This solution discusses the controversy of sex education in schools. It discusses the pro's and the con's of sex education in the classroom and various opinions to this topic.

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