Well meaning people believe that if they tell children about sex early, that if they teach them the ins and outs of different birth control methods, and if they give these things to them without their parents knowledge that they will be protecting these children against the inevitable. They believe that it’s only a matter of time before children become sexually active, and every moment counts. They start sex education classes earlier and earlier with the hope of getting to them before they start practicing this risky behavior.
This is the reasoning why the decision to provide birth control pills to middle schoolers seems wise to these well meaning people. They believe that if they provide access and training before they start getting involved in the inevitable activity that they will be protecting their children.
The problem is, at least they’re not using an effective method and at worst they are encouraging the very activity that they are claiming that they are trying to prevent.
Studies have shown that the most effective method of preventing teenage sexuality and the spread of sexually transmitted diseases is through parental involvement– not school mandated sex ed classes. The children with the most involved parents, where parents actually tell their children that they should not have sex actually start having sex later– if they do at all. Therefore, parents are the key to sex education, not sex ed classes.
Interestingly, as I look back over sex education classes, I would like you to remember the progression as well. At first, sex ed classes were only given to students in later years of schooling. Ever since it has made a march gradually further back. But it is a response to something. Could it be that as we’ve educated more children in a way that’s taken away their innocence that we’ve actually given information to children that were not ready for it– children that engaged in sex because the school was the source of the information?
Children are not just small adults. They are not equipped to make the mature decisions that we are. Giving them information and access and hoping they make the right choices is a plan (though well meaning) for failure.