April 25, 2013
Sex Education in Schools
Sex education is a broad term used to describe education about human sexual activity, sexual reproduction, sexual intercourse, and other aspects of human sexual behavior. Although some form of sex education is part of the curriculum at many schools, it remains a controversial issue in several states. Ignorance regarding sexual matters has resulted in 65 percent of all teens having sex before their senior year and 9.1 million of the 19 million Americans who get an STD in a year are teenagers or between the ages of 15 and 24 (“Teen Sex Statistics”). There is no better place than in a biology class or a special sex education class to inform children of the importance of having planned families; consequently, these classes can reduce teenage pregnancies and much physical suffering caused by AIDS or other serious sexually transmitted diseases. It should never be left to parents because, in many cases, they cannot properly inform their children on the subject of sex education. Sex education must be taught in schools because it will help to prevent STDs from being transmitted, especially among teens, it will help prevent teenage pregnancy, and will help prevent pre-mature sex, which can damage the body from an early stage in life.
Sex education does not only talk about sex. It also teaches about reproduction and sexual health. A lot of parents do not support the fact that sex education should be taught in schools, but yet they don’t take on the responsibility of teaching their children what they need to know about sex. Some children might find it very awkward to sit and talk to their parents about sex, but as awkward as it may be, sex education is very important for one’s teen or child. The purposes of sex education in schools are to cover the basics of healthy sex practices and to ensure that teens are aware of the risk in having sex. However, if it is not properly taught then there are possibilities that it might be viewed by teenagers as a gateway to the world of sex or that they are being told to have sex but in a safer manner. Most teens might not understand what is taught in class and this is where a parent’s role comes into place. Most parents find it uncomfortable for their teen to be learning about sex in schools but what is really being taught is the proper use of contraceptives and details about sexually transmitted diseases.
Over the past years, there have been rising rates of sexually transmitted diseases among teens. Kids are becoming more sexually active from an earlier age and parents are having difficulties controlling these problems. Sixty-Six percent of American high school students have had sex before their senior year (“Teen sex Statistics”). A lot of parents are not aware that their children are sexually active and so the support that is required for a teens well-being is not being given to him/her at the correct time. This is why sex education in schools is important. It plays the role of gap filler for a teen’s knowledge about sex that cannot be fulfilled by a parent. An article by Alison Calabia states that “Environment, age of partner and perceived family support may affect young people’s decision to have sex” (“Teen and Sex” 1). Teens are highly influence by their surroundings, such as the media, peer pressure, and lack of proper parenting practices. Researchers at Emory University have shown that teen pregnancy and other teen sex issues can be reduced through sex education and communication within the family. Sex education also helps teens to realize the dangers of sex in order to prevent them from engaging in risky behavior (“Teen and Sex” 1). Evident to the failure of parents to speak to their children occasionally about sexual practices can have serious consequences on a Childs life. In a story shared by Shelagh Genius she said:
I remember being called to the emergency department in the middle of the night to see…