Point-counterpoint: Sex education in NYC schools
Now that New York City schools are required to teach sex ed, we asked two people on both sides of the debate to weigh in. Is this a good idea or no?
NYC’s Sex Ed Mandate
As longtime sex educators, we found Wednesday’s announcement that New York City will now require sex education to be taught in schools to be fantastic news. For too long, too many of our teens have gone without comprehensive, age-appropriate, medically accurate sexuality education.
But while the city’s mandate is a good first step, it doesn’t go far enough.
Sexuality education is a lifelong process, and includes information on healthy relationships, parent-child communication, as well as abstinence, pregnancy prevention and STI and HIV transmission.
It’s important we integrate comprehensive, age-appropriate, medically accurate sexuality education fully into our schools, and teach it in every grade every year. Additionally we need to hold the administration accountable, and make sure educators have the resources and training they need to teach this subject.
–Joan Malin, President and CEO, Planned Parenthood of New York City
This Will Backfire
This is déjà vu.
We fought this battle 20 years ago. It’s clear the mayor and city council are abandoning all parent responsibility and trying to not only be school police, but parent educators.
The effect of this will be to further sexualize these young kids. Instead of the intended effect, it will increase teen sex, pregnancy and abortion.
We are a city that has distributed more condoms per capita than any other city but we are also the abortion capital. This new initiative will just make matters worse by giving the impression that sex is normal for children and it will backfire.
I would prefer to see a massive abstinence-only education program funded by New York.
–Chris Slattery, founder and President of Expectant Mother Care- EMC FrontLine Pregnancy Centers, a dozen abortion alternative centers throughout the city