Sex Education Should Be Taught in School
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“If the Liberals’ law is passed, will sex education in the schools, including elementary grades, include the same portrayals of sexual activity which presently exist in heterosexual instruction? Will there be the same presentation of homosexual activity? Of course there will.”
Sex education, also known as sexuality education or sex and relationships education, is a process of giving knowledge and forming attitudes and beliefs about sex, sexual identity, relationships and intimacy. It is a broad term that describes education on human anatomy, sexual reproduction, sexual intercourse, reproductive health, emotional relations, reproductive rights and responsibilities, abstinence, contraception and other aspects of human sexual behaviour.
Sex education is basically conducted to help youngsters and elders prevent themselves against abuse, exploitation, unintended pregnancies, sexually transmitted diseases and HIV and AIDS. Sex education is mainly provided by parents or caregivers, teachers, school programs and public health campaigns. Ideally, it should be given to kids before they reach puberty and before they have developed established patterns of behaviour.
Should sex education be taught in schools? There had been many debates over this. They say that sex education only destroys the morality of people because they think that sex education teaches students about how sexual intercourse is done.
Sex education, also known as sexuality education or sex and relationships education, is a process of giving knowledge and forming attitudes and beliefs about sex, sexual identity, relationships and intimacy. Although sex education lowers the morality of people by teaching students how to use condoms and contraceptives, it should be taught in primary school and secondary school because it teaches student about their body, it is indeed a need in case of parents’ absence, and it gives children the idea of what is right and what is wrong.
Others say that having sex education only encourages the students to engage in sexual intercourse and that it leads to sexual diseases and teenage pregnancy. The truth is that sex education does not encourage students to do it. According to Bleakley(2006), in a survey conducted, only about seventeen percent of the respondents answered that sex education does encourage them to do “it” and that the remaining eighty three percent strongly disagreed. Sex education prevents sexual diseases and teenage pregnancy.
But how? Students are taught how to use condoms. According to Masland(n.d.), kids are becoming more sexually active at an earlier age. Sixty-six percent of high school students in America have done it by their senior year. These kids are in danger of sexually transmitted diseases.
There is also a big possibility for them to become pregnant and that is why sex education should be taught to avoid these things from happening. In sex education, students are also taught of abstinence. They are taught that they should only have sexual intercourse after they get married. It gives students clear idea about their body and they will know that sex before married is wrong and can lead to many negative effect.
Children normally shy to ask parents about sex information so sex education should be taught to them so that they would learn it from an educated and responsible adult instead of learning it from the media or from their friends. The media itself sometimes gives bad influence to children and teenagers unknowingly followed what they saw on television. There will always be peers who would badly influence others. I remember my friend when I was in High School. They are only age eight to ten but the words that come out of their mouths are foul sex languages.
I was really surprised and our bus driver did not even intend to lecture them. When I was their age, I still did not know anything. The generation today just keeps on getting worse. The media and technology played a big role on this. Students can now access any site on the internet that contains adult content or pornographic materials. That is why sex education should be implemented in schools.
It is better for children to be informed earlier because they will still know about it when they grow up as they will be more exposed to it through their peers and the media (Cooper, n.d.). Through sex education, young people are able to communicate, listen, negotiate with others, ask for and identify sources of help and advice when it comes to sexual relationships. Through communication teenagers more confident and know better about the consequences of having sex before marriage.
People say that sex education teaches the students about how sexual intercourse is done but the truth is sex education lets the students know about the consequences and the truth about sex. One may likely suffer emotional or mental depression which may lead to suicide. Students are also informed that it is only for unity and procreation of married couples who are committed to each other. They are also informed that they will know the true purpose of sex when they grow up as adults. Appropriate sex education in schools has a great impact on preventing sexual problems in adulthood. Also, it teaches students on what is right and what is wrong.
Sexual education should begin at home. Parents and guardians ought to be the primary instructors of sex education for their children. Daily, parents should take advantage of every opportunity to teach this subject to their children. From the beginning of a child’s life, they learn how to respond to affection, show love, and how to react in different types of relationships. Children even learn about their sexuality when their parents speak to them, change their clothes, play with them or teach them their body parts.
As they progress from children to teenagers or adolescents they continue to learn about their sexualities consistently. However, some parents and guardians are very uncomfortable about talking about or providing information about sex or sexual education.
They are either too embarrassed about talking about the extreme topic of sex, afraid of providing to much information to push their children to act on what they have told them or shy of not knowing the answers to the questions that their children might ask. Honest, open communication between parents and children through childhood, pre-teen, adolescent and young adulthood can help young people to mature into sexually healthy adults. Research has shown that parents and children have a range of discomfort levels when it comes to discussing sexuality.
School-based sexuality education complements and supplements the sexuality education children receive from their families, religious and community groups. Therefore, due to the necessity of school-based sexuality education it is in my opinion that it be a part of the curriculum for students in the Bahamian High Schools that is junior and senior high. This course needs to be taught in the various high schools for a number of reasons including: to students to build a strong foundation, to decrease teenage pregnancy, to make students aware of Sexually Transmitted diseases and prevent them from occurring, to teach about abstinence, which is the better way and to inform the students about sexual orientation and homosexuality.
The primary goal of sex education in the schools should be to help young people to build a foundation as they mature into sexually healthy adults. These programs should assist young people in understanding a positive view of sexuality, provide them with information and skills about taking care of their sexual health and help them make decisions about solving problems now and in the future.
According to my interpretation, sex education should provide an opportunity for young people to develop and understand their values, attitudes, and beliefs about sexuality. This course should help young people to develop relationships and interpersonal skills and help them to exercise responsibility regarding sexual relationships including addressing abstinence, pressures to become prematurely involved in sexual intercourse and the use of contraception and other sexual health measures.
Teenage Pregnancy is very rampant in today’s society. In a conversation with a senior high school teacher, she related that at least two young ladies from each senior class graduates being pregnant. She went on to say that this did not include the numerous others who end their classes prematurely as a result of their pregnant state and their inability to continue with regular schooling. What do you think is the cause of this? In my opinion the cause of pregnancies among these teenagers is incorrect education about sex from peers or neighbours or no sex education at all. If these students were educated from their entrance into the high school program with a sexual education class, the outcome might have been different.
This does not mean that they would not have experimented with sexual intercourse or the opposite sex, it would have meant that they would have been better prepared to deal with the decisions or choices that they made. Sex education needs to be implemented in the high school coursework to make teenagers or pre-teens aware of the consequences of unprotected sex. Each of these teens or preteens will or have gone through puberty, therefore they need to be very well educated as to what can occur if they are sexually active, even for just one time. Sexual education would not stop teenage pregnancies but it indeed reduces them.
Homosexuality is another topic that sexuality education will discuss. Teenagers come into contact with homosexuals on a day to day basis. They are forced to deal with homosexuality in their homes, their neighbourhoods, their churches and even in their schools. These students are in their teen or adolescent years where they are learning about who they are and what their feelings mean. In my opinion, homosexuality is a misunderstanding, one that can be easily adopted by teenagers who are easily misunderstood.
If they are not taught about both heterosexuality and homosexuality, they can easily fall prey to the homosexuals who are lurking in the society’s shadows. Sexual education would encourage heterosexuality- healthy relationships between males and females. It would teach students about sexual preference and that homosexuality is not hereditary. It would also help students to deal with feelings toward the same sex and with homosexuals that they come in contact with.
Some may say that if teenagers are taught about sex and sexuality that their interest in it will intensify thus, resulting in experimentation. Although this might indeed be a true statement that teenagers are very curious, “curious minds will experiment.” Sexuality education is not an either or proposition. The reality is that young people need and deserve information about abstinence and contraception. Sex education would teach that sexuality is a natural, normal part of life. Abstinence from sexual intercourse is the most effective method of preventing unintended pregnancies and sexually transmitted diseases, including HIV/AIDS.
Abstinence is in fact the better way. Adolescent or pre-teens should be encouraged by not only their parents to delay sexual acts until they are physically, cognitively and emotionally ready for mature sexual relationships and their consequences.
The coursework of sex education would offer them a wide range of information exclusively on abstinence until marriage. Interventions that are effective in encouraging teenagers to postpone sexual intercourse helps them to develop interpersonal skills they need to resist premature sexual involvement. For interventions to be most effective, teenagers need to be exposed to these programs before they initiate intercourse, preferably during their high school years.
The sex education curriculum when implemented into the high school system will be designed to promote knowledge about human development and reproduction, to make students aware of the consequences of all types of sexual activity, and to promote young people’s respect for and appreciation of themselves, their families and others. This implementation would in fact help to reduce teenage pregnancy, for the reason that important topics such as puberty, sexual health and hygiene, reproductive systems, pregnancy and contraception will be focused on.
These topics will discuss abstinence, condom use, diversity, pregnancy options, safer sex and sexual behaviour. Students have to be encouraged to accept the shared responsibility of pregnancy prevention by teachers explaining the consequences of premature and unprotected sexual activity, urging responsible decisions about sexual intercourse, and encouraging healthy, respectful and safe male and female relationships.
Even though that there are many advantages of having education of sex on school there are disadvantages. Sex education only teach students immoral behaviour and it only lead students to commit immoral activities. Even without know enough information about sex they already do it what if they already been teach about sex. The possibility for the teenagers to do sex before marriage is more higher compared to not teach them about sex. In conclusion, sex education should be taught in schools because it is better to consider health than beliefs and we should consider reality.
Since immorality cannot be eliminated and teenagers cannot be stopped from becoming sexually active, we should implement sex education in schools, as early as primary school. It also the only way for children whose parents are always away from them and that is why sex education is needed so that they will not lose track of the right path. Through sex education, students will be able to learn the truth about sex and they will be able to refrain and control themselves.