Board OKs Curriculum for Sex Ed

Article excerpt

The Duval County School Board voted 7-0 early today to approve a

new comprehensive health education curriculum, including its

hot-button sex education component.

"Wow!" board Chairwoman Cheryl Donelan said after the vote was

taken. "This is a real accomplishment and I appreciate

everyone's hard work."

The board amended the seventh-grade curriculum to include an

optional abstinence pledge.

Though the School Board seemed headed for a rousing endorsement

of the curriculum, the speakers who came before them earlier

last night were divided on the issue.

Some told the board they were going too far, endorsing what one

woman called an "ungodly" curriculum. Others said they weren't

going far enough, failing to be realistic about teenage sexual

behavior.

The comprehensive abstinence-based health curriculum covers

topics from basic hygiene to birth control to AIDS.

Consensus on the issue was a long time coming.

The new curriculum was backed by organizations from the

Christian Coalition and Planned Parenthood. Both groups were

represented last night, speaking in favor of it.

A lawsuit, filed in 1992 by Planned Parenthood and a group of

local families, focused on Teen-Aid, the seventh-grade

curriculum which does not cover the use of contraceptives. …