Crisis pregnancy care centres are in schools undermining sexual health education with misinformation, fear and shame. LGBT youth are erased in binary, heterosexual focused lessons. Some anti-choice groups are in schools teaching fetal development.
This must be challenged at the school, board and provincial level if we are to ensure that youth receive the health protecting information that they are entitled to. Alberta AIM (Accessing Information not Myths) provided these pillars of quality sexual health education.
1) Medically accurate, evidence-based, age appropriate, and comprehensive.
“A widely accepted definition of medical accuracy is that information provided to students be “verified or supported by research conducted in compliance with scientific methods and published in peer-reviewed journals, where appropriate, and recognized as accurate and objective by professional organizations and agencies with expertise in the relevant field” http://www.advocatesforyouth.org/sexual-health-education
2) Inclusive of LGBT2S sexuality, including discussions and demonstrations of safe sex and STI prevention.
3) Inclusive of persons with disabilities
4) Teaches the meaning of enthusiastic sexual consent.
Defined as an active process of willingly and freely choosing to participate in sex of any kind with someone else, and a shared responsibility for everyone engaging in, or who wants to engage in, any kind of sexual interaction with someone. When there is a question or invitation about sex of any kind, when consent is mutually given or affirmed, the answer on everyone’s part is an enthusiastic yes.
5) Parents must be provided with a consent form that specifies who will be teaching sexual health to their children, what they will present and what materials will be used.
From the Advocates for Youth http://www.advocatesforyouth.org/sexual-health-education: “Parents are key partners in education as voters, advocates, volunteers and consumers of public education. There is a growing body of research linking parent/family engagement with learning outcomes and more focused attention being paid to developing effective family engagement policies and practices… Research has shown that good, quality parent-child communication about sexuality can delay the initiation of sexual activity and increase the use of contraception, including condoms.
6) Organizations that provide sexual education must provide effective, ethical, judgment-free, inclusive, respectful, secular comprehensive sexual education.
Qualified presenters can be found:
Alberta Health Services (use caution if using the referral help directory or 811 – see our petition):
Teaching Sexual Health: