Sex education is designed to help young people gain the information, skills and motivation to make healthy decisions about sex and sexuality throughout their lives.
Is Sex Education Effective?
Research on sex education has focused on whether programs help young people to change specific behaviors related to preventing pregnancy and sexually transmitted diseases such as:
• Delaying sex until they are older
• Using condoms and contraception when they do have sex
• Reducing the frequency of sex
• Reducing the number of sexual partners
Hundreds of studies have shown that sex education can have a positive effect on these behaviors, particularly when sex education programs incorporate all of the following seventeen key characteristics as developed by Douglas Kirby from the National Campaign to Prevent Teen and Unplanned Pregnancy:
The Process of Developing the Curriculum:
• Involved with multiple people with different backgrounds in theory, research, sex and STD/HIV education …
My parents never brought up the subject of sex with me. Like, ever. I think they hoped that if they never mentioned anything about it, I would just magically avoid learning about my body and penises until I turned 30. But I did learn about sex early on — in fact, I already had a rudimentary idea of what sex was before I had to take sex ed in high school. The concept of sex was this conglomerated entity for me, slowly created over time as I secretly watched episodes of Sex and the City, and asked friends’ older sisters what “blow job” meant. I can only imagine what it’s like now with the endlessly incriminating Internet, but by the time I took sex ed, I thought I knew the basics. Minus the actual important aspects, like the multitudes of safe sex, sexuality, and the intricacies of sex itself. So, …
Sexuality education means talking about all the factors that feed into children and young people’s sexual growth and development. Topics include bodies, privacy, sexual decisions, respectful behaviours and language, and the ‘place’ of sex in people’s lives.
Many parents find it difficult to talk to their children about sexual matters. Simple tips and a range of practical suggestions are available that may help to open the lines of communication.
How parents communicate
• Research suggests that parents generally aren’t very confident about discussing sexual issues with their children. Along the way, a lot of young people miss out on valuable information. Common findings from the research include:
• Fathers tend to avoid taking part in sex education discussions.
• When fathers do talk to their children about sex, they limit the conversation to less intimate issues.
• Mothers are more likely to talk about intimate, emotional and psychological aspects of …