The skinny on sex ed
Are Florida schools providing good, solid, comprehensive sex education? Not even close, concludes a University of Florida study published last fall in the American Journal of Sexuality Education.
"There seems to be no standards guiding sex education in Florida," Brian Dodge, a former UF professor who led the study (he's now at Indiana University), told The Gradebook. "It's pretty much anything goes."
The study is worth a look in light of legislation filed this week by two state lawmakers, Sen. Ted Deutch, D-Boca Raton, and Rep. Dorothy Bendross-Mindingall, D-Miami (see the St . Petersburg Times story on that here.) Dodge was at the Tallahassee press conference with the lawmakers, who are probably facing an uphill climb given a Republican-dominated Legislature and an issue that couldn't be more hot-button.
Just because it doesn't gain traction in Tally, though, doesn't mean it's not an issue. Here's how the study summed things up: "Even though the vast majority of teachers (87%) acknowledged that sexuality education, in some form, took place in their schools, it was most often afforded little time, occurred late in the students' academic career, had little to no uniformity in terms of what was taught and who was teaching it, had no standards in terms of training or quality assurance, was not accessible to all students, and may not adequately address their realistic needs of students."
Oh boy. To see the full report, click here.
- Ron Matus, state education reporter (Image, Time magazine)