What place does sex education have in youth ministry and on what issues of sex should you or can you educate your youth?
This is a topic that I did not give much attention to until recently and I was surprised by how appreciative the youth were that we were finally talking about sex at church in an honest and open forum (And I do mean "honest and open." The teens were allowed to ask any questions they wanted.) But there is also the concern about whether or not there is such thing as "too much information." Does sex education have the power to not only inform but also to encourage sexual behavior? Do abstinence programs work? What is the role of parents and school and all of this? These questions were all touched upon in a recent discussion on the Diane Rhem radio show on NPR:
The latest teen birth rate figures are up after a 15-year decline, and the presidential campaign has renewed questions over the effectiveness and appropriateness of comprehensive sex education and
abstinence-only education. A look at the trends in teen sexuality and efforts to influence young people's decision making.
The panelists included: Sarah Brown, director of the National Campaign to Prevent Teen Pregnancy Valerie Huber, executive director, National Abstinence Education Association Debra Hauser, executive vice president, Advocates for Youth Stan Weed, director and CEO, Institute for Research and Evaluation Douglas Kirby, senior research scientist, Education, Training and Research Associates. It is definitely worth a listen.
You might also want to check out other posts on this blog related to sexuality here.