Wednesday, September 4, 2013

Tulsa, OK Abandons Abstinence-Only "Education"

From Raw Story

The school district in Oklahoma’s second largest city has begun to implement a plan to teach comprehensive sex education in its schools. According to Tulsa’s Channel 9 News, the district plans to launch the program in four selected schools, then expand to include the entire district.

Classes will be taught to 7th, 9th and 11th graders at two high schools and two middle schools. Officials said the state’s status as fourth highest in teen pregnancy has spurred educators to abandon abstinence-only education.

“Forty-four percent of students who become pregnant or who are married at that age fail to graduate from high school, and that’s something that affects them for the rest of their life,” said Tulsa Public Schools spokesperson Steve Mayfield to Channel 9.

Oklahoma, like many Republican-led states, has no statewide sex ed requirements for students. And like many of those states, Oklahoma is not seeing the steady decline in teen birth rates that states with comprehensive sex ed are enjoying.

The Guttmacher Institute — a non-profit organization dedicated to the advancement of sexual and reproductive health and rights worldwide — released a study September 1 that showed that states without comprehensive sex ed for teens consistently have the highest numbers of teen births per year. 

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