[Image of sex ed class from Boston.com]
That sounds like a reasonable question.
Except it was asked by a sincere MALE student at Texas State University!
In Texas, according to Matt Frazier, "any course material and instruction relating to human sexuality and sexually transmitted diseases ... must:
"Present abstinence from sexual activity as preferred for unmarried people of school age.
"Devote more attention to abstinence than to any other behavior.
"Emphasize that only abstinence is 100 percent effective in preventing pregnancy, sexually transmitted diseases and the emotional trauma associated with adolescent sexual activity.
"Teach contraception and condom use based on usage rates instead of theoretical laboratory rates, if instruction on contraception and condoms is included in curriculum.
The Texas Freedom Network released a report the other day indicating that "The overwhelming majority of Texas schools use scare tactics and spread myths in place of teaching basic sex and health information that students can use to protect themselves and others."
This report derives from a two-year study of sex education materials from 990 Texas school districts, and shows that "94 percent of public schools use abstinence-only programs that usually pass moral judgments while either downplaying or ignoring contraception and health screenings."
It isn't any wonder, then, that "Texas continues to have one of the nation's highest teen pregnancy rates despite receiving more federal abstinence funding than any other state."
And this fits with other national studies which show that while the federal government has poured $1 billion down the black hole of abstinence-only sex education, it has had no effect whatsoever on teen sexual activity and teen pregnancy rates.
'What it has done, unfortunately, is left millions of our school children without basic sex information and left them vulnerable to pregnancy and disease!
The report also showed that 41 percent of the material used by Texas school districts contained errors of fact with regard to condom use and STDs. "Shaming and fear-based instruction are standard means of teaching students about sexuality."
Maybe these districts should listen to Bristol Palin!
Read more from the Star-Telegram here.