Overcoming future barriers to sexuality education. Politics and sex education There are interesting differences between countries in the extent to which national politics have affected school sex education. Near panic set in, in some quarters, as it became appreciated that many, perhaps most, people infected with HIV would go on to develop AIDS and subsequently die. Whether this is partly responsible for the fact that a teenage girl in the UK or USA is about 10 times as likely to become pregnant than in the Netherlands is controversial. History of Education Quarterly, 47 2 , — Feminist critiques of sex education programmes pointed out how such programmes sometimes actually reinforced gender inequalities. It began more widely to be appreciated just how often the discourse of sex education served to perpetuate the belief that male self-control, though possible, could not be relied on, and that women, by their behaviours, should help men to act responsibly. Around the s and s the focus of sex education was towards the marriage and family life style, the anatomy of the human bodies and the roles of family members. It was this sort of language that so alarmed many conservative commentators and legislators, on account of what was perceived as the increasing liberalisation of school sex education.
According to Schalet, in federal funding shifted to focus more on prevention education, sexually transmitted diseases, the benefits of condoms and contraception, and shifted away from the abstinence only movement. Feminist critiques of sex education programmes pointed out how such programmes sometimes actually reinforced gender inequalities. Around the s and s the focus of sex education was towards the marriage and family life style, the anatomy of the human bodies and the roles of family members. The significance of the Second World War The Second World War had, of course, huge consequences for the lives of most of the population of Europe and a considerable number of countries beyond. It has begun to issue guidance to schools on how to tackle homophobic bullying and, while still supporting marriage, has tried to distance itself from the position that children brought up in homes where parents are not married, as is, of course, increasingly the case, are living in second-rate families. In both the UK and the USA, national politics have been extremely influential with a small but powerful lobby believing that much school sex education is corruptive. A number of circumstances, including the controversy over the Gillick case, which focused on whether parents always have the right to know if their children are being issued with contraceptives when under the age of 16, and the growing strength of the lesbian and gay movement, led to a polarisation of views on sex education, among politicians at local and national level. Education Digest, 72 5 , 41— This process would happen in sex education programs across the nation. By educating the students there is a better chance that they will not become another statistic of unwanted pregnancy and sexually transmitted diseases. Other items on the agenda include teaching high school students responsibility for their actions, how to handle peer pressure, gender roles, personal hygiene, birth control, human reproduction and lastly knowledge of sexually transmitted diseases. Works Cited Carter, J. The research that has been done is largely about school sex education during the 20th century. The growing acceptance of feminist-thinking led to an increase in the number of programmes that encouraged pupils to examine the roles played by women and men in society. We moved away from the notion of teaching kids that the only way that it was proper to engage in sexual activities was to be married. There has been much controversy over time on what to teach, who should teach, the moral of sex education in the classroom and the religions aspects and beliefs of the families that attend the school. Should they be able to make the decision as to whether or not to have sex or to remain in celibacy? In the curriculum they put a focus of sex in the natural world. The teachers would present the students with questions such as, should young girls be learning about sex? At this point in time the teachers were not allowed to express their personal opinions about sex and marital status. Recent and current school sex education Recent school sex education programmes have varied considerably in their aims. How have the views of sex education in schools created a shift in the learning content from teaching about marriage and family life to pregnancy and STD prevention? If society is more open to accepting sex, then schools should be more open to teaching about it. The focus of this paper is to shed light on the content shift in sex education classes to determine why the change occurred. They taught sex in this way so the students were still able to learn but they were not intimidated by the possible picture contents of having to see a picture of actual people engaging in intercourse.
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