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Jul 2, 2010The San Marcos Independent School District in central Texas is considering adoption of an abstinence-plus sex ed curriculum in place of the current abstinence-only curriculum. This is good news. Now, students in San Marcos Texas will have the chance to learn medically accurate information about contraceptives – something that has been deprived of them up until this point.This has a potential to be a major victory in a growing area. These proposed changes are desperately needed. Like many Texas school districts, sex-ed is never actually taught, even if the curriculum is abstinence-only.Often, sex-ed is ignored because educators have not been trained on how to properly administer the curriculum. This leads to outside contractors giving sex ed instruction in schools, which can often be a very poor situation.“Guettner said sex education is not in the high school’s master schedule and teachers find it awkward to teach.”By implementing these changes, sex-ed could receive the proper amount of attention in San Marcos it deserves and no longer be pushed to the side.“The district currently uses an ‘abstinence only’ curriculum called ‘Worth the Wait’ for grades 6-8 and high school. Although the district uses the program, San Marcos CISD Director of Curriculum and Instruction Pam Guettner said sex education ‘has probably not been taught very often.’”The new curriculum, Big Decisions, is abstinence-plus and does a good job of encouraging students to explore the options available to them, including contraception. The information in this proposed curriculum is medically accurate and is currently taught in Austin ISD.The SHAC, or School Health Advisory Committee, made the proposal to change the curriculum to abstinence-plus.“On May 27, the district’s School Health Advisory Council (SHAC) recommended switching to abstinence plus curricula, and a district ad hoc committee of about 20 parents, clergy, other community members and staff supported abstinence plus.”SHACs can be a tool you can use to effect real change in your community. Students can join SHACs and help to recommend comprehensive sex-ed. Not all states have SHACs, but many states have similar community-outreach groups that are run by school districts. Join yours today and make sure your voice is heard. You can learn more about SHACs and what it is like to serve on one by watching this video of Mackenzie, a Youth Leadership Council member in Austin, Texas.
You can read more about the story at the San Marcos Local News.