I actually don’t entirely agree with sex education in schools. Let me tell you why. My stance is pretty much the same reason I don’t agree with prayer in schools. People often attribute the ongoing challenges and issues among students within the primary educational system to the removal of prayer from schools or the overall elimination of religion from the public school system. I personally don’t feel allowing prayer back in the school system will miraculously stir the hearts of our youth to behave in ways adults or parents deem appropriate. After all, many of these same youth regularly attend church services and functions; often praying. Do those prayers not account for something? Let’s say somehow we do manage to put prayer back in school. Who is the student body going to pray to? We live in a society with diverse beliefs, customs, and traditions. Will this be a collective prayer? Will there be provisions made to accommodate the diversity of faith systems and deities. Who would be designated to create a school policy and enforce protocol to ensure equality and prohibit discrimination? Again, who are the students going to praying to?
In addition to very dry facts often provided in primary educational environments, if wanting to implement comprehensive sexuality education, whose sexological worldview will be taught to our youth? Although many sexuality educators are skilled, knowledgeable, and passionate with the desire to perpetuate sexuality positivity, as sexuality professionals who are we to say what information should or should not be shared? Who are we to say that I can impose my ideals of what is appropriate for someone else’s child to utilize as knowledge when making decisions about sex; especially if the parent did not personally reach out to me as opposed to the school system mandating sexuality education without parental consent or support.
As a parent, I must admit, I am very selective of who is teaching my child sexuality. Do I want an educator exposing my child to a new world of choices and behavior at such a defining stage of development? Even as an educator I would still question a fellow educators approach to sexuality. We are not all of one accord. We are talking about my child, not your awe inspiring debut into sexuality education, or your idea of a resume building opportunity, or another addition to your impressive curriculum vitae. As a parent, I would think who are you to tell me what my child should know about sex other than what I have already taught my child. Is this so-called “comprehensive sexuality education” a one size fits all. Does your education take into account my child’s specific journey and environment. Although many educators have good intentions, your good intentions may sway my child against me possibly causing chaos in my home. Where will the educator be when my child decides to become defiant due to a newly found since of independence and sexuality positivity? Yes, I agree that sexuality education should first begin with the parent. Yes, I believe that sexuality education should be an ongoing discussion within households and throughout the stages of youth into young adulthood. Yes, I am aware, having worked within the non-profit and for-profit sectors specializing with young people, that parents often do not discuss sex. Does this mean sexuality education should step in where parents have stepped out? Not necessarily. In addition to parental involvement I do believe sexuality education should be community based; allowing a forum for those wanting education to seek support. I make myself available for that purpose. I will not force-feed my agenda. I will not impose. If a parent is seeking guidance, I am available. To me this is the most effective approach; helping those whom are actively seeking help. Eliminating or withdrawing sex education from schools, only allows sexuality educators like myself, the opportunity and the challenge to continue to provide knowledge in our unique way; which is what I do on a regular basis, outside the public school system. Unfortunately, those that are ignorant and do not seek help, will remain ignorant. Ignorance will continue to exist, that is a construct that will never be eradicated. It is not entirely my responsibility to save the opposition.
“If you know the enemy and know yourself, you need not fear the result of a hundred battles. If you know yourself but not the enemy, for every victory gained you will also suffer a defeat. If you know neither the enemy nor yourself, you will succumb in every battle.”
― Sun Tzu, The Art of War