School's Sex Ed Textbook Is a Bit Too '50 Shades' for 9th Graders​

kids in a classroomSex ed in schools can be a contentious topic for parents, but the subject has been elevated to a whole new level for parents in Fremont, California. More than 600 parents are petitioning and threatening legal action over a new ninth-grade health textbook being used in their district, which includes not only drawings of sexual anatomy (okay, sure, why not?), but mentions of vibrators, oral sex, and bondage. Whoa, talk about progressive!

Or, well, the word that might be better suited to describe this book is "advanced." Your Health Today actually references college kids and is listed on bookseller sites as a college health textbook. But district officials say students need this information before they get to college, because by then, it's too late.


I most definitely agree -- when it comes to certain topics addressed in the book, such as nutrition, fitness, stress, body weight and body image, drugs and alcohol, and even certain aspects of sex (like birth control). But come on, now, "atypical sexual behaviors and paraphilias, or sexual mental disorders"? Sex positions? Bondage? Ehhhh, it definitely makes sense that parents -- even really progressive, liberal parents -- are questioning whether it's necessary for their kids to get that kind of information as freshmen in high school.

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It almost seems counterproductive to try to cover certain bases so early on. Why not make sure to do a thorough job with the basics before jumping into fetishes and other detailed info? This more advanced subject matter is certainly not necessary for ninth-graders. What's more, having it as part of the curriculum could actually serve to overshadow and undermine the invaluable message of sex ed. Kids should be armed with info they can actually use to protect themselves against unwanted teen pregnancies and STDs. Learning about condoms, great, but less on behaviors that would fall under Christian Grey's "singular tastes"!

For those reasons, hopefully, parents' voices will be heard, and the community can reach some sort of compromise, so that, ultimately, its teens get the highest quality and most appropriate education.

Would you be okay with your ninth-grader learning about the topics in this book?


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