False Assumptions Produce Unintended Results
Parents who send their kids to public or charter schools in CA are presented with only two options when it comes to school-based sex education. Either participate in or opt out of “Comprehensive Sex Education” (CSE). Parents are often making that choice without knowing what CSE encompasses, or what was measured to reach the conclusion that it works.
If you assume the goal of school-based CSE is to reduce the number of teen pregnancies and decrease the transmission of infections, you would be wrong.
The GOAL of Comprehensive Sex Ed. is: To reduce number of acts of unprotected sex.
Let me translate that for you: A CSE program is deemed “effective” even if many teens who were NOT having sex before the program ARE having sex afterward — as long as they’re using condoms.
Think that through. Teens who weren't taking any risks at all BEFORE participating in the sex ed. program, are taking sexual risks AFTER the program. More teens are at risk, but this is considered “effective.”
In April of 2019 the Institute for Research and Evaluation screened several hundred sex education studies for acceptable research methods and adequate scientific quality. They found 120 studies which met the standards. The results of their report were:
School-based CSE programs attempting to show effectiveness (that is, producing an effect such as abstinence, consistent condom use, pregnancy, or STDs over time) FAILED 87% of the time.
There was no support for the claim that CSEs produce "dual benefits" (meaning more abstinent teens and increased condom use by sexually active teens).
No evidence was found that CSEs had any effectiveness at increasing CONSISTENT condom use (meaning more participants may have used condoms, but none used them consistently with every sex act over time, which is required for condoms to be effective.)
Parents would be wise to ask how does a myth like "Comprehensive Sex Ed is effective" get established?
It works like this: CSE program developers (using tax dollars to fund their research) decide what the content of a sex education program should be, and which statistical information is relevant. Included with the program purchase is an evaluation service to track the outcomes they want to measure. Then they sell the program to school districts across the country, which pay for them using more tax dollars. When the CSE is complete, the program developers evaluate the results and agencies like the Centers for Disease Control or the National Institutes for Health publish a report on which programs were found to be effective.
Let me explain that another way. You design a widget. You own all the companies which produce any part of your widget. You also own all the companies who rate widget-effectiveness. People buy your widgets. You send your employees to evaluate if the widgets performed as expected. You produce a report which proves your widgets are the Best Widgets Ever. The government publishes your report. Media outlets of one accord announce every widget made by anyone else is inferior to your widget!
Here’s something else which should also alarm parents: All CSE programs have a built-in supposition that protection protects! But does it? What do the experts say about it? Consider the language on the CDC Fact Sheet On Condom Effectiveness:
Consistent and correct use of male latex condoms can reduce (though not eliminate) the risk of STD transmission. To achieve the maximum protective effect, condoms must be used both consistently and correctly. Inconsistent use can lead to STD acquisition because transmission can occur with a single act of intercourse with an infected partner. Similarly, if condoms are not used correctly, the protective effect may be diminished even when they are used consistently. [Emphasis added].
That sounds a little dodgy, right?
Parents and teens who attend LoveFest '20 will learn how similar false assumptions actually increase the risk of unintended consequences such as teen pregnancy, or acquiring STIs. Please join us, and invite your friends or family who need to know the truth!