Sex is often a taboo topic in our society. Everyone knows about it, and most people do it, but few are comfortable discussing it. Sometimes, it's even too hard for parents to discuss with their children, so they rely on the schools and education system to do so. Leaving it up to them can result in your child being taught things you didn't necessarily want. Various religious and cultural attitudes exist about sex and the use of contraceptives, and what your school teaches may differ from your personal beliefs.
Certain religious practices believe in preaching abstinence to teens and young adulthoods. Having sex before you're married is considered to be a sin. They are against making condoms available in schools for two main reasons. They believe that sex is an act that occurs between a married man and woman for the sake of reproduction. Contraceptives are not necessary, as no one other than married people should have sex. More liberal religious attitudes are accepting of those who have sex out of wedlock and support the use of contraceptives in these situations. However, they believe that making them available to teenagers will just encourage them to be sexually active.
The other side of the debate wants to hand out condoms in schools. Although some do believe in the religious practices that teach only abstinence, they are realistic about the increase of sexual activity among teens and even pre-teens. They believe the teens are going to have sex whether or not you provide them with any contraceptives, so you might as well make condoms available to them.
Studies have shown though that the best way to get kids to wait to be sexually active until their older and to use contraceptives is a school program that combines a multi-facet sex education program along with making condoms available in school. Research has shown that these kids will wait longer than their peers to have sex, and they will be more informed about pregnancy and birth control. They will have a better grasp of the consequences of their actions and understand the importance of why they need to use contraceptives when they decide to be sexually active.
If you are concerned with what a school teaches your child in sex education, you should remember that their primary educator, even surpassing their school is you their parent. The views and attitudes you have regarding sex may differ from the schools. It is your responsibility to discuss sex, pregnancy and birth control with your child, especially if you disagree with the school.
No one knows for sure if making contraceptives available in schools just encourages teens to be sexually active or meets the demand of what is already occurring across the country. Therefore, it's your job as a parent to educate your child and make a decision regarding how you're going to prepare them.
If you choose to make contraceptives available to your child, it is your responsibility to educate your child about them and pregnancy and birth control. Teens must realize there can be serious consequences if they decide to be sexually active.