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Local and Community News

North Carolina: Sex Ed Lessons Amended

February 19, 2003

Wake County, N.C. school administrators have removed most references to homosexuals that were added three months ago during the school board's sex education curriculum update, but they say they are not backing down from promoting tolerance for all students. Parents of students in grades seven through nine soon will receive letters inviting them to review the curriculum before deciding whether to let their children attend classes that begin mid-April.

The Wake school board in November voted 5-4 to add more instruction about contraceptives, STDs, the effects of teen pregnancy, and tolerance for gays and lesbians to a curriculum that emphasizes abstinence until marriage. The board stopped short of changes sought by advocates of a comprehensive sex education curriculum that would provide more information about subjects such as the proper use of condoms and the nature of homosexuality.

In the revisions, all but one reference to sexual orientation has either been removed or changed -- from material that teachers would have told students to material for teachers only. Also deleted are recommended classroom activities to promote tolerance for homosexuals. School administrators added explicit mention of anal and oral sex for the first time, replacing previous reference to "homosexual acts." The lesson plans warn that anal and oral sex are felonies in North Carolina. "There's a limit to what they can do under the state's abstinence law," said Kate Howard Franch, a Health Education Task Force spokesperson, about changes to give students more medically accurate information about STDs and contraception. "Given the limitations, it's much better than what it was before. Diversity is only one part."

Back to other CDC news for February 19, 2003

Previous Updates

Adapted from:
News & Observer (Raleigh, N.C.)
02.11.03; T. Keung Hui



  
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This article was provided by CDC National Prevention Information Network. It is a part of the publication CDC HIV/Hepatitis/STD/TB Prevention News Update.
 

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