Post # 1
So, someone showed me this article this morning:
It concerns the issue of NYC public schools beginning VERY in-depth sex ed classes. I was wondering… how much is too much?
Personally, I totally support comprehensive sex ed classes. I did a research paper in college on the negative effects of abstinence-only education. I do think that some things might be a little over the top though. I mean… a school sex ed class probably doesn’t need to talk about beastiality and BDSM. Refer them to resources to find out about it like the article says, definitely… but probably don’t cover that one in class. Oral, anal, masturbation, kissing, contraception, etc. I definitely agree with. I even agree with discussing porn and porn addiction with teens. A lot of my guys friend growing up had an issue with too much porn and I think this could be avoided with education.
I do think that it should fall on parents to educate their kids and make sure they are well-informed but the sad truth is that that simply does not happen a lot of the time. Whatever the reason for that, I do think that those kids do still need to know about it.
So, what are your opinions on this? What is too much to you and why?
Note: I do realize this is probably going to be fairly controversial but PLEASE KEEP IT CIVIL. Everyone is entitled to their own opinion so please be respectful of that. No arguing or putting anyone down. I see it and I WILL flag you.
Post # 3
@zippylef: I share pretty much the same view you do.
My school did a very good job and started teaching very basic sex ed in 5th grade. They split up boys and girls and started talking about puberty and other changes. Then in middle school we had more comprehensive sex ed in both co-ed and single sex environments.
Our 8th grade biology class also went in depth into human reproduction, Save-The-Date Cards, and sex for pleasure.
We didn’t have any real discussion about porn/porn addiction though and definitely didn’t have any discussions about the dangers of sex on the internet (i.e. chat rooms etc) which I think would have been good especially for when my contemporaries were in middle school and high school.
Post # 4
@zippylef – I totally agree with you on the comprehensive approach to teaching sex ed (though I think talking about beastiality may be taking it a little too far lol)!!! I teach at a community college and actually just gave my kids an article on sex ed vs. abstinence only education on which to write a response journal. The overwhelming majority of my students agree with us.
This further drives my point home, for me at least. I taught in the “Bible Belt” a couple of years ago where the students were not allowed to receive sex education (presumably because it encouraged fornication – gasp!). The two favorite forms of “birth control” were having sex standing up (gravity) and having your boyfriend drink Mt. Dew because it lowers sperm count. When I saw six girls all pregnant by the same guy (who thought it was oh so awesome), it tells me that we need to at least give kids the information to protect themselves. Two of these girls were in my mentor’s English class the second semester I was down there (won’t say where). Giving kids the information helps lessen the chance that we’re turning out ignorant individuals with regard to their sexual health.
Post # 5
@karatechick27: That really makes me sad. It’s my view that no matter what is taught, there are students who will be having sex and those who won’t. You might as well teach safe sex and how to prevent pregnancy so those who are having sex don’t look to old wives tales/the internet to figure out how to prevent pregnancy and/or Save-The-Date Cards.
It’s sad that these young kids end up with a life changing pregnancy or disease just because they weren’t given a little bit of education that could have prevented it.
Post # 6
I wish that sex ed didn’t have to be taught at school. I hated sex ed, especially at the later (we started in grade 4). In jr. high, I had a teacher who talked about what semen tasted like. In high school, I frequently felt singled out; we had to share our opinions by going to different sides of the room. We used to get visiting speakers as well, and I had the entire class snickering when someone who was HIV positive ask us who thought AIDS would not kill you. I was the only one who raised my hand, and was laughed at by others for being the only one who was correct (where all these other people were for the past 6 years of sex ed, I don’t know). Luckily for me, by high school I really didn’t care what the others thought, but it bothered me that they would have activities where people would be judged by others based on their opinions about sex.
Ideally, I would like to see parents/guardians teach their kids, but since they can’t always be relied on, I think it does have to be taught.
I think I would have less of an issue if it was just taught as fact, and incorporated into health in the younger grades and science in the older grades.
Post # 7
I think schools that primarily teach abstinance should start teaching more fact…there will always be kids that have sex and if they dont know the risk, then they will just put themselves at risk.
We should have spent more time on STD’s, I personally think. I know plenty of kids that should have seen picture proof that yes, you can get open sores on your privates.
For me, I just think schools should teach fact, and leave opinion out. Make condoms easily availible…not to promote sexual activity, but to allow those that are going to do it anyway have access to what they need. I think we just need to man up and realize that no matter how much we preach that kids shouldn’t do it, they are going to anyway, so we might as well give them all fact.
Post # 8
I thought my school did a good job of it. We had opposite sex assemblies on 4th grade that were basically a series of talks on how the body works. Periods and sex and how you get pregnant. But very very very basic stuff. In 8th grade we had health and did a week of sex ed including contraception (generally) and an experiment I remember where we all got test tubes of clear liquid and then we had to walk around and share our liquid with other people (pour a little of ours into theirs, and a little of theirs into ours). We could do it as many or as few times as we wanted to. At the end we were told that to start, 1 vial had a chemical that would react with dye (i.e. to start one person “had” hiv), but then the teacher went around and put a drop of dye into each of our vials and those who turned blue had the “virus.” So if you swapped with someone who had it– you had it. It was basically to show how easy it is to spread it, and how you don’t even have to have contact with the original person to have gotten it.
In 9th grade we had a whole semester of sex ed and the teacher was very explicit about all forms of contraception including making us put condoms on bananas. But, it was all very fact based and she spent a lot of time dispelling myths.
And only like 2-3 girls in my school got pregnant the whole time I was there, so I’d say it did a decent job.
Post # 9
I think making them go to the store and check prices and such for condoms is not actually a bad idea.Same with knowing where the local clinic is for getting tested and such.
I think the focus should be on the basics of what sex is, refuting myths (such as the gravity/mountain dew thing), Save-The-Date Cards, and a healthy relationship (date rape, abuse, and such). Talking about beastiality and BDSM is too far IMO and not really something I would want a school teaching my kids.
Same thing with the card thing with 11-12 year olds. That’s too much too early, IMO.
Post # 10
I wish they did a better job of teaching sex ed. Abstinence only teaching does not belong in schools, especially high schools. They need to stress safe sex because honestly, most kids are having sex in high school. And most people don’t use condoms or birthc ontrol because they didn’t know how to use them back then!
Post # 11
@CorgiTales: that actually sounds like a very good way to do it. I bet that HIV experiment opened a lot of eyes.
Post # 12
I grew up in Catholic schooling and we were given the very basics in 8th grade. By that point in time there were only 3 virgins left in my class. And this was about 20 years ago. The course they gave us was a joke. It was all about abstinence and it lasted about 30 minutes.
I know my 13yo has known about sex since he was 9 since I told him about it and if he has a serious question then I will answer it. They do teach sex ed as early as 5th grade here and In My Humble Opinion it is not a bad thing. Too many parents bury their heads in the sand and think oh my child would never do anything like that. My son thought he was being funny the other day and asked me for a condom. Now I was at my OB’s office and gave them to him afterwards. I know for a fact he is not having sex yet, he still hasn’t gone through puberty yet. But I also want him to know that I would rather he be safe than sorry. Not all parents would do that. I see no point in hiding things from them.
Beastiality might be a little much, but I have to agree with the other items that are being discussed. So many kids think that if they are not having “sex” then they are safe. They don’t consider oral as sex so therefore they can’t catch anything. Sad but true.
Post # 13
I went to school in very very conservative counties/parishes in Texas and Louisiana, and they pushed abstinence at us very very hard. We were taught the basics of puberty, but almost nothing past that. The belief seemed to be that being taught comprehensive sex education was the same thing as encouraging us all to have sex.
It was doubly bad for kids like me, whose parents didn’t sit down with us to have the talk. I mean no sort of talk…when I got my period the first time I thought I was dying (I started before we got the puberty class). Anything I knew about sex and pregnancy I learned from TV, the internet, or my older brothers. I was very lucky I didn’t get pregnant when I was a teenager…much luckier than the two dozen or so girls who had gotten pregnant and/or had kids by the time we graduated (for some reference, there were approximately 150 girls in my graduating class).
I think it’s super important to be informed about sex and everything that comes with is. The way I see it, kids are going to be having sex regardless, and I’d rather my children (and their partners) know how to protect themselves from unplanned pregnancies and Save-The-Date Cards.
As for exactly how much, I do think that teaching kids about beastiality and BDSM is taking it too far.
Post # 14
@CorgiTales: That sounds like an experiment that would get younger people thinking.
I have to say, even though I went to a crazy high school we had a great sex-ed program. It was mostly to dispell myths, lots of questions and to teach us where to get pills, condoms, etc. In fact in our health room there was always a bowl of condoms there that were free to anyone who needed them. Also at my school we had a nurse who would come in every thursday and answer any questions you had about anything.
Post # 15
@CorgiTales: We did something similar, but it was way more regimented. We didn’t have a choice who we shared with and who we didn’t. I think the way it was done for you sounds way better!
I also got annoyed by the half truths in the younger grades. Things like “girls might have some minor cramps when they get their period”. Yes, that’s true, but they might also get horrible cramps, feel incredibly nauseous, get migraines, etc. There was also someone who asked a question in the ‘question box’ about shaving legs, and the teacher said there was no need to be doing that yet, but in a few years many of us would probably choose to. At that point I had been shaving/sugaring for over a year (I had my period already, and have light skin with dark hair).
Post # 16
@zippylef: I agree with your position too. Abstinence only education is no education at all.