More Parents Complaining About ‘Graphic’ Sex Education Curricula, Washington Times Reports
U.S. school and health officials have reported a "surge" in parental complaints about public school sex education programs, the Washington Times reports. Most complaints address the "graphic" nature of comprehensive sexual education programs, but parents are issuing complaints on "both sides of the debate," the Times reports. Brad Dacus, president of Pacific Justice Institute, a not-for-profit legal defense organization, said that his organization has seen a 220% increase since 2001 in sex education-related parental complaints filed against school districts. Officials at the Sexuality Information and Education Council of the United States attribute the rise in complaints to increased parental involvement in sexual education. However, Dacus said the increase in complaints could indicate that "parents are getting tired of schools trampling on what they consider their rights." Approximately 95% of U.S. public high schools offer courses on sexuality or HIV/AIDS, and a third use "abstinence-only" sex education programs, according to a national survey conducted by the Kaiser Family Foundation. In addition, 81% of Americans want schools to teach abstinence and provide information about protection for teenagers who are sexually active to help prevent unplanned pregnancies and the spread of sexually transmitted diseases, according to the survey (Sorokin, Washington Times, 1/16).This is part of the KHN Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.