Richard Buery on The Huffington Post: Revamping Sex Education: A New Approach to the Birds and the Bees

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"Parents and policymakers are more likely to embrace school-based family life and sexuality education programs that are age and stage appropriate, while not obsessing over public health outcomes to the exclusion of all other dimensions of a young person's development."

Co-written by Dr. Michael A. Carrera, Director of The Children's Aid Society-Carrera Adolescent Pregnancy Prevention Program

New York City School Chancellor Dennis Walcott and Mayor Michael Bloomberg should be commended for their push to improve family life and sex education for public school students in grades 6-12. Current data indicate African-American and Latino teens in New York City have extraordinarily high rates of pregnancy, sexually transmitted infections and sexual risk-taking. Public education has an obligation to address this frightening trend. However, the Department of Education's narrow approach, using genital-sexual issues as the driving theme, must be significantly broadened in scope to effectively address this daunting public health and personal development issue. The City should consider a more comprehensive initiative that takes into account all aspects of a young person's growth and development, not solely strategies associated with understanding and reducing sexual risk-taking.

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