Finland[ edit ] In Finland , sexual education is usually incorporated into various compulsory courses, mainly as part of biology lessons in lower grades and later in a course related to general health issues. Schools are expected to provide 30 to 40 hours of sex education, and pass out condoms, to students in grades 8 and 9 aged 15— In January , the French government launched an information campaign on contraception with TV and radio spots and the distribution of five million leaflets on contraception to high school students.
The ultimate goal is to foster mutual respect between boys and girls early on so that it impacts their conception of the world later on.
Since sex education is a governmental duty by law. It is comprehensive enough that it sometimes also includes things in its curricula such as sex positions. Most schools offer courses on the correct usage of contraception. The birth rate among to year-olds was very low—only At the time of the People's Republic of Poland , since , it was one of the school subjects; however, it was relatively poor and did not achieve any actual success.
This policy is largely due to the strong objection against sex education raised by the Catholic Church. There is also an official program intended to provide sex education for students. Nearly all secondary schools provide sex education, as part of biology classes and over half of primary schools discuss sexuality and contraception.
Starting the school year, age-appropriate sex education—including education about sexual diversity —will be compulsory in all secondary and primary schools. The curriculum focuses on biological aspects of reproduction as well as on values, attitudes, communication and negotiation skills.
Dutch sex education encourages the idea that topics like masturbation, homosexuality, and sexual pleasure are normal or natural and that there are larger emotional, relational, and societal forces that shape the experiences of sexuality. Dutch parents try to accept their children's romantic relationships and even allow sleepovers, expecting them to have sex. The Netherlands has one of the lowest teenage pregnancy rates in the world, and the Dutch approach is often seen as a model for other countries.
Generally the sex ed content taught in Slovakia is quite basic, sometimes lacking, though exactly what any given lesson contains varies among schools and is dependent on the teacher's knowledge of the subject. It is not uncommon for teachers to rely on students asking questions as opposed to documentaries, discussions, textbooks and in-class debates. Classes are usually divided into boys and girls.
Boys are taught the basics of sex, usually limited to dialogue between student and teacher of annotated diagrams of genitalia; while girls are additionally taught about menstruation and pregnancy. Alongside this emphasis of sexual diversity, Swedish sex education has equal incorporations of lesbian and gay sexuality as well as heterosexual sexuality. They provide knowledge about masturbation, oral and anal sex as well as heterosexual, genital intercourse.
In Geneva , courses have been given at the secondary level first for girls since and compulsory programs have been implemented at secondary level for all classes since the s. Interventions in primary schools were started during the '80s, with the basic objective of empowering children, strengthening their resources, and giving the capacity to discriminate what is right or wrong based upon what is and isn't allowed by law and society.
They are also given knowledge of their own rights, told that they can have their own feelings about themselves, and informed on who to talk to in case they feel uncomfortable about a private matter and wish to talk about it.
Finally, the objectives include an enforcement of their capacity to decide for themselves and their ability to express their feeling about a situation and say "No". In secondary schools, there are programs at ages 13—14 and with the basic objective to give students a secure moment with caring, well informed adults. With confidentiality and mutual respect, students can talk to an adult who understands youth needs and what they should know about sexual life in conformity with age and maturity.
In the German part of the country, the situation is somewhat different. Sex education as a school implemented program is a fairly recent subject, the responsibility given to school teachers. It involves teaching children about reproduction, sexuality and sexual health. The compulsory parts of sex and relationship education are the elements contained within the national curriculum for science.
Parents can currently withdraw their children from all other parts of sex and relationship education if they want. Some schools actively choose to deliver age appropriate relationship and sex education from Early Years Foundation Stage , which include the differences between boys and girls, naming body parts, what areas of the body are private and should not be touched unless the child is happy and gives consent. Education about contraception and sexually transmitted diseases are included in the programme as a way of encouraging good sexual health.
In response to a refusal by Catholic schools to commit to the programme, however, a separate sex education programme has been developed for use in those schools. Funded by the Scottish Government , the programme Called to Love focuses on encouraging children to delay sex until marriage, and does not cover contraception, and as such is a form of abstinence-only sex education.
Ontario has a provincial curriculum created in An updated version was first proposed in , but was shelved by the Liberal government under Dalton McGuinty. It is currently based on the discretion of each teacher. With rates of syphilis and gonorrhea rising in the province since this change, several researchers and sex educators are criticizing the current policy, most notably Lisa Trimble and Stephanie Mitelman. Sex education in the United States Almost all U.
Many states have laws governing what is taught in sex education classes and contain provisions to allow parents to opt out. Some state laws leave curriculum decisions to individual school districts.
Other studied topics, such as methods of birth control and infection prevention, sexual orientation , sexual abuse , and factual and ethical information about abortion , varied more widely. Among 48 USD states except North Dakota and Wyoming in their state laws and policies, 21 stressed abstinence-only sexual education and 7 emphasized that abstinence should be taught in their state's sexual education programs. Only 11 states require that students receive both comprehensive and abstinence education and 9 states did not mention any sort of sexual education in their laws and policies.
On the other hand, proponents of abstinence-only sex education object to curricula that fail to teach their standard of moral behavior; they maintain that a morality which is based on sex only within the bounds of marriage is "healthy and constructive" and that value-free knowledge of the body may lead to immoral, unhealthy, and harmful practices.
Within the last decade, the federal government has encouraged abstinence-only education by steering over a billion dollars to such programs. To date, no published studies of abstinence-only programs have found consistent and significant program effects on delaying the onset of intercourse. Congress found that middle school students who took part in abstinence-only sex education programs were just as likely to have sex and use contraception in their teenage years as those who did not.
The Virginia Department of Health  ranked Virginia 19th in teen pregnancy birth rates in Virginia was also rated The Healthy people goal  is a teen pregnancy rate at or below 43 pregnancies per 1, females age 15— Texas[ edit ] Sex education in Texas has recently become a policy of much focus in the state. With the rise of recent protests and proposed bills in the Texas House, the current policy has been the focus of much scrutiny.
As of , when Senate Bill 1 was enacted, Texas has left the decision of inclusion of sex education classes within schools up to the individual districts. The school board members are entitled to approve all curricula that are taught; however the bill has certain criteria that a school must abide by when choosing to teach Sex Ed.
Additionally, school districts are not authorized to distribute condoms in connection with instruction relating to human sexuality. Sexuality Education in Texas Public Schools  report where they found that: Shaming and fear-based instruction are commonly used for teaching sex ed Gender stereotypes are promoted A majority of students receive no information about human sexuality except abstinence The materials used regularly contain factual errors and distort the truth about condoms and STDs According to Texas State Representative Mike Villarreal, "We have a responsibility to ensure that our children receive accurate information in the classroom, particularly when students' health is at stake," Villarreal said.
We cannot allow our schools to provide erroneous information—the stakes are far too high. The bill would have medically accurate information, including: The bill received a hearing but was left in committee. It did not receive a hearing. Scientific evidence accumulated over many decades clearly demonstrates that the abstinence-only-until-married AOUM curriculum taught in Texas schools is harmful and ineffective in reducing the adolescent pregnancy rate in Texas. In fact, the U.
Some opponents of sex education in Catholic schools believe sex ed programs are doing more harm to the young than good. Opponents of sex education contend that children are not mentally and emotionally ready for this type of instruction, and believe that exposing the young to sex ed programs may foster the students with the preoccupation of sex.
The Catholic Church believes that parents are the first educators and should rightfully fight for their duty as such in regard to sex education: A Consultative Council for Health and Human Relations Education was established in December under the chairmanship of Dame Margaret Blackwood ; its members possessed considerable expertise in the area. The Council had three major functions: Support services for the Consultative Council were provided by a new Health and Human Relations Unit within the Special Services Division of the Education Department of Victoria and was responsible for the implementation of the Government's policy and guidelines in this area.
The Unit advised principals, school councils, teachers, parents, tertiary institutions and others in all aspects of Health and Human Relations Education.
In the Consultative Council recommended the adoption of a set of guidelines for the provision of Health and Human Relations Education in schools as well as a Curriculum Statement to assist schools in the development of their programs. These were presented to the Victorian Cabinet in December and adopted as Government policy. New Zealand[ edit ] In New Zealand, sexuality education is part of the Health and Physical Education curriculum, which is compulsory for the first ten years of schooling Years 1 to 10 but optional beyond that.
Sexual and reproductive health education begins at Year 7 approx. Sexual liberals see knowledge on sex as equipping individuals to make informed decisions about their personal sexuality, and they are in favor of comprehensive sexual education all throughout schooling, not just in high school. Sexual conservatives see knowledge on sex as encouraging adolescents to have sex, and they believe that sex should be taught inside the family in order for their morals to be included in the conversation.
Sexual conservatives see the importance of teaching sex education, but only through abstinence-only programs. Prescott , holds that what is at stake in sex education is control over the body and liberation from social control. Proponents of this view tend to see the political question as whether society or the individual should teach sexual mores. Sexual education may thus be seen as providing individuals with the knowledge necessary to liberate themselves from socially organized sexual oppression and to make up their own minds.
In addition, sexual oppression may be viewed as socially harmful. Sex and relationship experts like Reid Mihalko of "Reid About Sex"  suggest that open dialogue about physical intimacy and health education can generate more self-esteem, self-confidence, humor, and general health. A website which supports that view is the Coalition for Positive Sexuality. Naturally, those that believe that homosexuality and premarital sex are a normal part of the range of human sexuality disagree with them.
They may believe that sexual knowledge is necessary, or simply unavoidable, hence their preference for curricula based on abstinence. LGBT sex education One major source of controversy in the realm of sex education is whether LGBT sex education should be integrated into school curricula. Studies have shown that many schools do not offer such education today. These education standards outline seven core topics that must be addressed in sex education; one of those core topics is identity.
The identity topic presents lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender identities as possibilities for students as they progress through life and come to understand who they are. These standards, the Future of Sex Education argues, will start in kindergarten and will evolve into more complex topics throughout schooling as the students mature and age.