60-day review of health/sex ed curriculum - Ahwatukee Foothills News: Topstory

default avatar
Welcome to the site! Login or Signup below.
|
||
Logout|My Dashboard

60-day review of health/sex ed curriculum

Print
Font Size:
Default font size
Larger font size

Posted: Friday, January 8, 2010 12:00 am

Throughout the past decade Arizona has consistently ranked among the top 10 U.S. states with the highest number of teenage pregnancies. Now, parents of students in the Kyrene School District have an opportunity to play an active role in the district’s health curriculum focusing on growth and development that may help their children make informed choices as they mature.

The KSD Governing Board adopted new objectives last April to teach students about the dangers of sexual abuse, pregnancy and STDs. So far, only five parents in the entire district have reviewed the materials.

“Once the curriculum objectives are adopted by the governing board we have to find materials to convey and teach the objectives,” said Susanna Yost, health curriculum coordinator for KSD.

Now that the curriculum has been modified, it has been put up for a 60-day public review. Any parent or community member interested in viewing the curriculum and providing their input can visit KSD headquarters to view videos and read lesson plans that will eventually show up in KSD classrooms.

“We want parents to be fully aware of what we’re teaching and give us their feedback,” Yost said. “The curriculum is opt-in permission based, so if the children don’t have permission from their parents they don’t take part in the lessons.”

According to Yost, only about 2 percent of students across the entire district opt-out of the growth and development health education.

To meet KSD’s new curriculum objective to reduce STDs and teen pregnancy, a section of the seventh- and eighth-grade curriculum focuses on condoms and the fact that they can reduce the risk of pregnancy or contracting a sexually transmitted infection (STI).

“There are no demonstrations with condoms, the students will just be told that condoms reduce risks and where they can be bought,” Yost said.

KSD teamed up with the Maricopa County Health Department to develop appropriate presentations, and speakers from the health department will actually come to KSD schools to make the presentations.

“We’ve found that the students are more willing to ask sensitive questions of knowledgeable speakers who visit their classroom than their every day teacher,” Yost said. “The speakers have guidelines to help them appropriately answer questions that may arise.”

Aside from presentations by the county speakers, new videos have also been chosen for the various grade levels. One video, Let’s Just Talk, which will be shown to fifth-graders, teaches about growth and development in the form of a radio show. Topics discussed include changes to expect as students go through puberty and how to keep a healthy level of self-esteem.

Another new video, presented in a more serious tone, Abuse: If It Happens To You, discusses emotional, physical and sexual abuse, and what students should do if they fall victim to these types of abuse.

The new health curriculum has been available to parents for several weeks now, and will remain available until March 26. Ahwatukee Foothills resident Tami Brian viewed the materials because her daughter is a KSD student.

“I feel as a parent that it is good to be involved in certain processes,” Brian said. “Anytime schools can improve on the materials they have for educating children on sensitive subjects, I think it benefits the children and entire community.”

According to Brian, there is definite improvement in the curriculum, and she believes students will remember the subjects discussed in the videos.

“I think the videos proved that there are appropriate ways to touch on the subjects that are happening to children today,” she said. “It’s important to keep the kids up on what’s happening around them.”

Michelle Hirsch, vice president of the KSD Governing Board, is one of two governing board members who reviewed the materials. Hirsch hopes that KSD parents will take advantage of this opportunity to provide input on what their children will learn.

“I can say as a previous KSD parent myself, there were a couple of times when I went and viewed materials, and there were a couple of times when I didn’t,” she said. “I always felt better when I viewed them and had a better understanding of what my children were learning. It made for better discussion at home.”

When Hirsch reviewed the curriculum, she was surprised at how quickly the process went.

“It doesn’t take very long if you’re looking at one grade level or all of them,” Hirsch said. “It’s an hour of your time at the most.”

When sensitive subject matter is involved, as in this instance, Hirsch encourages parents to take a look at the curriculum for themselves instead of relying on other people’s impressions and opinions.

“As a parent, to see the materials for yourself is much better than hearing a rumor about what’s in the materials,” Hirsch said. “When material is controversial, it’s good for parents to be clear and confident about what their children are learning.”

To view the new health curriculum, visit KSD headquarters at 8700 S. Kyrene Road. Grade levels in which curriculum has been adjusted include fourth, fifth, seventh and eighth grades.

After the review period is over, the KSD Governing Board will take the feedback from parents and community members into consideration and vote on whether or not to modify or adopt the curriculum as is.

More about

More about

More about

  • Discuss

Campaign now says Donald Trump Phoenix speech not on immigration

Donald Trump will return to Phoenix next week but campaign staffers now say he won't be delivering a speech outlining his immigration policy a…

Published: August 24, 2016 - 11:34 pm @ http://www.abc15.com/news/region-phoenix-metro/cen…

First in the Country: All Obamacare Insurers in AZ County Ready to Pull Out of Obamacare

So far this year, many Obamacare insurers have pulled out of the unconstitutional and lawless Affordable Care Act that bears the nickname of t…

Published: August 24, 2016 - 11:02 pm @ http://freedomoutpost.com/first-in-the-country-all…

Ahipoki Bowl expanding once more; set to open third location in Tempe near Arizona State University

TEMPE, AZ - Ahipoki Bowl is expanding into Sun Devil territory. The eatery revealed plans on Wednesday to open across from Tempe's Arizona Sta…

Published: August 24, 2016 - 7:02 pm @ http://www.abc15.com/entertainment/events/ahipoki-…

How I Create: Q&A with Art Therapist Lanie Smith

Almost every month I have the pleasure of interviewing a different person about their creative process. I love learning how others define crea…

Published: August 24, 2016 - 6:38 pm @ http://blogs.psychcentral.com/everyday-creativity/…

Trump money man funding TV attack on John McCain

PHOENIX — Robert Mercer, the New York billionaire well-known as a political benefactor of Republican presidential candidates Donald Trump and …

Published: August 24, 2016 - 6:29 pm @ http://www.usatoday.com/story/news/politics/electi…

Trump to deliver immigration speech in Arizona next week

Ballot Box feed By Jessie Hellmann Donald TrumpDonald TrumpTrump: Clinton is a 'bigot who sees people of color only as votes' Brexit leader st…

Published: August 24, 2016 - 6:31 pm @ http://thehill.com/blogs/ballot-box/presidential-r…

Minimum wage hike foes want state high court to toss measure

PHOENIX (AP) - Opponents of a voter initiative raising the state's minimum wage from $8.05 to $12 an hour by 2020 on Wednesday asked the Arizo…

Published: August 24, 2016 - 6:01 pm @ http://www.cbs5az.com/story/32835490/minimum-wage-…

Trump vows 'no amnesty, but we work with' illegal immigrants

Ballot Box feed By Jesse Byrnes Donald TrumpDonald TrumpBrexit leader stumps for Trump: I wouldn't vote Clinton if she paid me National poll: …

Published: August 24, 2016 - 6:00 pm @ http://thehill.com/blogs/ballot-box/presidential-r…

Renewable Energy Is Killing the Environment

A lot has been made of California’s government-funded embrace of so-called green energy. Driving from the Arizona border to LA, you’ll be hypn…

Published: August 24, 2016 - 5:37 pm @ https://ricochet.com/renewable-energy-killing-environment/

The Shop Beer Co. to Celebrate Grand Opening This Weekend in Tempe

Sara Palmer A A Tempe's newest brewery will open on Saturday, August 27.  Located at 922 West First Street, The Shop Beer Co. will officially …

Published: August 24, 2016 - 5:30 pm @ http://www.phoenixnewtimes.com/restaurants/the-sho…

Facebook

ahwatukee.com on Facebook

Twitter

ahwatukee.com on Twitter

RSS

Subscribe to ahwatukee.com via RSS

RSS Feeds

Spacer4px

Most Popular

Online poll

Loading…