Pennsylvania County's New Sex Education Curriculum to Focus Less on HIV/AIDS, Reinforce Abstinence
August 12, 2004
The sex education curriculum in West Allegheny County, Pa., public schools has been revised to reinforce sexual abstinence and the prevention of sexually transmitted diseases, with less of a focus on HIV/AIDS, the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette reports. The new curriculum also will not include information about condoms, oral contraceptives or any other methods of preventing pregnancy or the transmission of STDs other than abstinence from sexual activity, according to the Post-Gazette. The school district's original curriculum -- which was developed in the late 1980s -- focused primarily on HIV/AIDS. Although there is no evidence that West Allegheny students have become increasingly sexually active or are experiencing an increase in STD incidence, Charles Fazekas, district director of education services, said that the curriculum "still needed to be updated," according to the Post-Gazette. Fazekas since January has been meeting with a panel of parents and teachers to discuss revisions to the county's health education, physical education and sex education curricula. The committee members -- who became "alarmed" by published data about increasing STD prevalence among U.S. teenagers -- decided that the "only safe approach" is to teach only abstinence, the Post-Gazette reports.
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This article was provided by Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation. It is a part of the publication Kaiser Daily HIV/AIDS Report. Visit the Kaiser Family Foundation's website to find out more about their activities, publications and services.