"Should sex education curriculums be solely abstinence -based or should they include information about safe-sex?"

Lisa Balstad
"I believe the sex education curriculum taught in public schools should cover all aspects. We would be fooling ourselves to think that teenagers did not know about sex. However, the accuracy of (teens') information is up for debate.
"I feel that the school's sex education curriculum needs to inform teen-agers on all the facts and risks of pre-marital sex. It should stress abstinence-based material and why a young person would want to choose to remain abstinent until marriage.
"As parents, it is our responsibility to educate our children on sexual issues based on our personal religious beliefs. It is unfortunate, however, that many parents have left this all too important issue up to the public school system."

Sherma Ray
"That's like saying 'Should we only teach addition, or should we try a little subtraction, too, in math class.'
"The only 100 percent way to prevent pregnancy or a sexually transmitted disease is abstinence, but if they make the choice to be sexually active, they should have the education to know how to protect themselves.
"That's not telling them to go out and have a 'really good time.' It's teaching them to be responsible for all their actions and giving them enough information to do so."

Tami Fager
"I am the mother of a teen-age daughter and I have asked myself this very question time and time again. I try to teach my daughter the importance of waiting, the practice of abstinence and making good decisions. On the other hand, I want my daughter to be informed, educated and protected.
"Teenage pregnancy is still a problem in our society. Why? This is 2004! Why are teenagers having unprotected sex? Are they afraid to talk to their parents? Are they unaware of the consequences of their actions? It's a tough decision to make, but my answer is to teach abstinence, but also teach teens about safe sex. Ultimately, they are going to do what they are going to do. At the very least let's offer them education and as well as choice. "

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