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July 23, 2007

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Nathan A

If the main issue is getting safety infomation about sexual abuse to children, I'd propose dropping the sex education label. Because I don't think that there'd be as many opponents to a "predator education" program.

Daunna Minnich

Thanks for raising this important topic. Some people may feel squeamish about the idea of sex education, but almost all schools teach it in some form these days, and it makes perfect sense for modified (and expanded) sex ed lessons for kids whose needs cannot be met by standard courses. For kids who lack social understanding and skills, safety isn't just about being the victim of a predator but also about getting into legal trouble for behavior that might make them seem to be predators themselves, and consequently being tossed into jail, which would make them even more vulnerable. Another type of safety: Girls taking medications need to learn the importance of consulting a doctor before, or as soon as, they become pregnant in order to prevent damage to their baby.

This topic needs broader treatment than the coverage in an ordinary science or health class, and parents need to anticipate and explain those needs to IEP teams. It's not a one-time thing and needs to start as kids approach puberty and continue into adulthood.

Liz

Thanks for addressing this important issue. I posted an excerpt at SchwabLearning's parents' message board.

http://www.schwablearning.org/message_boards/view_messages.aspx?thread=23207

Kara Sheridan

I completely agree that comprehensive sexual education is a MUST for ALL children-It's so baffling to me that every single study shows us the failures of abstinence-only programs, but they continue to be the norm in many parts of the country.

While I know it's tempting to pitch the need for increased inclusion for kids with disabilities based on the increased risk of sexual abuse, I also think it sets up (or really promotes the already existent view) that sex and sexuality is pimarily negative, dangerous, and something we should avoid. I understand we are at a greater risk for abuse but focusing only on that only furthers the view that people with disabilities are victims. True comprehensive sexual education should also promote positive sexual self esteem development.

Miller Smith

Considering safe information, when a student (and mother) asked me (her 7th grade life science and sex education teacher) advice on having sex with her HIV positive boyfriend, I said....what?

What should I have said?

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