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HB 234 - Sex Education Pilot Program - Mississippi Key Vote


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Title: Sex Education Pilot Program

Vote Smart's Synopsis:

Vote to pass a bill that requires the State Board of Education and the State Board of Health to jointly establish a pilot program for comprehensive, age-appropriate sexual education in high risk school districts for the 2009-2010, 2010-2011, and 2011-2012 school years.


-Requires the Department of Education, after consulting the Department of Health, to submit a report before January 1, 2012 that contains comparative data on the numbers of pregnancies among students in the participating school districts before and during each year of the pilot program and a recommendation on whether the program should be implemented on a permanent basis in all or certain school districts to the Chairman of the Education Committee of the House and Senate, the House Public Health and Human Services Committee, and the Senate Public Health and Welfare Committee (Sec. 1) -Requires the Department of Education to develop programs with the following strategies (Sec. 1):

    -Providing counseling aimed at preventing unintended pregnancies and sexually transmitted diseases among teens; -Providing social and cultural support services regarding teen pregnancy; -Providing health and education services related to the prevention of unintended pregnancies and sexually transmitted diseases among teens; -Promoting better health and educational outcomes among pregnant teens; -Providing training for individuals who plan to work in school-based support programs regarding the prevention of unintended pregnancy and sexually transmitted diseases among teens; and -Providing sex education as part of the curriculum of the pilot program in addition to the curriculum as required by existing law.
-Requires the Department of Human Services to develop programs with the following strategies (Sec. 2):
    -Promoting effective communication among families about preventing teen pregnancy; -Educating community members about the consequences of teen pregnancy; -Encouraging young people to postpone sexual activity; -Providing information about the health benefits and side effects of all contraceptives and barrier methods as a means of reducing the risk of pregnancy and sexually transmitted diseases; and -Providing educational information, including medical information on contraceptives and barrier methods, for young people in communities who are already sexually active ore are at risk of becoming sexually active.
-Requires that males and females be separated when sexual education is being discussed or taught (Sec. 2). -Prohibits educators from teaching students that abortion can be used to prevent the birth of a baby (Sec. 2). -Specifies that no student is required to participate in a sexual education course unless their parents submit a written request consenting to have their child in the course. The written request must adhere to the requirements established by existing law, including a notice to parents of their right to exclude their child from the course and their right to review the curriculum and all other materials to be used in the course (Sec. 3). -This is a substitute bill sponsored by the House Committee on Education.