Emily K. Maryland

Sex Education in High School

Due to the changing world Sex Education in schools needs to be expanded and reformed to keep all teenagers safe.

Dear Future President,

Sex Education in schools needs to be expanded and reformed due to the changing world. As more teenagers are identifying with the LGBT community we also need to include education for them as well. Technology and the access to media are greatly affecting the views teenagers have on sex. Pornography is very easily accessible and this is how they are getting their information, non reliable information. Porn also promotes the idea that sex is no big deal, an idea that is dangerous for impressionable teenagers. This topic is very prevalent in the teenagers life, therefore we need to be safe, both physically and mentally. Girls and boys both need to have a secure emotional safety, and we need to understand the emotional effects that sex has on you afterwards. With the media and world changing at rapid paces, modern day teens need to have a reliable education.

As of March 1st 2016 all of the states have some sort of sex education program in their schools. 24 states and The District of Columbia teach sex education. These statistics sound good at first but when we read further Newsweek tells us, “fewer than half of high schools and only a fifth of middle schools teach lessons on all 16 of the nationally recommended topics for sexual health education. Less than 40 percent of schools nationwide required sex and health education for graduation”. States are educating students but is the education truly working? Are we including the private schools? I go to a private school and I never have had a good education in this area due to lack of resources, everything that I learned was either from the internet or from friends, therefore the information was not accurate. This needs to change. In fact my community's public high school has one of the highest rates of STD’s around, and that alone is terrifying. The Center for Disease Control reports that 19.7 million people will get a new STD every year in the US. Not only do we need to have a secure physical safety but we need to have a secure emotional safety as well, we need to understand the affects that sex can have on you afterwards, the guilt and the emotional influences and how to cope with those. Times have changed from the when sex was something that no one could talk about because it was uncomfortable and awkward but we still have a long way to go. The world is changing so the education for modern teens needs to change too.

We need to reform sexual education. Teens are identifying themselves in new ways (LGBT) and that affects this issue for certain people so we also need to include them to make sure that these people are comfortable in the education. The internet and porn are also huge factors in the way that teens perceive sex, we are learning about it from the media and that is not a reliable source. Porn is not the way it used to be. It is so easily accessible all you have to do is Google it, unlike the past when it was a nasty magazine or a tv channel that you paid for. Teens are learning the rules of sex and what to do from these unreliable sources. It gives us the wrong image, most of the time the actors don't even use protection. This is not a reliable source and we as teenagers need a reliable source to learn from.

I know that teens have questions that they do not feel comfortable asking their parents. I have had certain questions about growing up that I didn't want to talk to my parents about, it just didn't feel right and that's okay. I think that every teen faces this struggle at some point. A new statistic from Planned Parenthood Federation of America says that: “Some parents are still uncomfortable talking about harder topics, such as birth control and how to say no, and can use help having these conversations.” My parents were teenagers in a different time than me, times have changed, and are continually changing, talking to my parents can be a struggle for me and any teen because parents don't always understand. So Mr. or Mrs. President this is why I propose that the teens of the modern world have a good and reliable education taught by someone who is a professional outside of their family. Please provide funding to all the schools, both public and private schools. There is a lack of resources at private schools, I go to a private high school and we tried to find some kind of program, it was not available to us. There needs to be more resources available. Teens cannot go on thinking the way that they are now, that girls are objects to be used, and that boys don't need to use protection. Free internet pornography is unsafe and a bad resource.

Dear future President please address this issue. Please produce new and improved education policies for Sex Education and provide greater funding in this department, to all schools, for safer teens.