Texas Now Has New Sex Ed Standards | Ntarupt CEO Thanks All Who Made This Possible!
From Terry Greenberg, Founder & CEO of North Texas Alliance to Reduce Unintended Pregnancy in Teens
Thank you to our many allies who helped in this monumental statewide effort! First to our Texas Is Ready coalition partners Healthy Futures of Texas and the Texas Campaign to Prevent Teen Pregnancy, you have shown such dedication and fact-based leadership during this months-long fight to push Texas towards more inclusive sex education standards. And special thank you to The Dallas Morning News Editorial Board for this piece, “Opinion: Sex education in Texas just joined the 21st century.”
Huge thank you to the members of our Ntarupt team who testified including myself and our Director of Programs Veronica Ray-Whitehead. Together, we have vetted the proposed sex ed standards and passionately advocated for more comprehensive improvements. Education champion and Texas State Board of Education District 13 Aicha Davis, Dallas City Councilman Casey Thomas, Rabbi Nancy Kasten, Faith Commons, Emily Martin, Jessica Chester and many more.
Our steadfast collaboration to improve the sex education curriculum for Texas youth has resulted in more comprehensive, although not inclusive, standards for our youth. It is unfortunate that despite months of intensive and immersive education from our coalition, youth sex education experts, as well as hundreds of youth throughout our state, the newly updated standards leave behind the research-proven need for more education around consent and LGBTQ inclusivity.
On behalf of our Ntarupt staff and leadership, we are still encouraged because the new standards do demonstrate progress for our state, our youth and our future generations. The new standards demonstrate that conservative and progressive minds can come together to carve out a curriculum that better prepares our students for the real world.
Our Texas Is Ready coalition statement says,
“The new curriculum standards at the middle and high school levels include age-appropriate, medically accurate content including human anatomy, puberty, reproduction, abstinence, contraception, prevention of sexually transmitted infections, and healthy relationships. For the first time, TEKS include content such as the HPV vaccination, postpartum depression, online safety, human trafficking, cyberbullying, and other 21st century topics. While the standards do not include education on consent, they do include instruction on setting boundaries and respecting the boundaries of other people, an improvement over the current TEKS which only focus on refusal. Consent is a foundational topic in the prevention of sexual abuse and assault. Unfortunately, the standards do not include any content that is inclusive of LGBTQ youth. However, Texas school districts have the option to “teach beyond the TEKS” and adopt curricula that include additional content, so long as it prioritizes abstinence. Next year, the State Board of Education will adopt instructional materials that cover these new standards.”
Why is this Significant? Because:
- Once implementation begins, all 7th and 8th graders will get this vital information, regardless of whether their district requires high school health.
- These are minimum standards, so districts (like Dallas ISD) can discuss the importance of consent and make sex education inclusive of ALL children!
- Preparing our families, schools, districts, and communities for when the new standards take effect in 2022.
- Contact Ntarupt for more information.
Again, thank you to all who helped make this possible. We are not done and are ready to continue the progress now, in 2021 and beyond. Our youth deserve it.