Calling Premier Dad - Sex education

Now we have a new Major Minority Government (hey, that's what the Ontario Liberals call it?) we can see them move on the school sex education curriculum. Especially after the tragic story of Jamie Hubley

The new curriculum was proposed in 2010 and dismissed by the premier less than two days later after a handful of noisy fundamentalist chirstian schools wrote some emails.  We need the Government to act and now would seem a good time to do this.  

The McGuinty government brought forward a very detailed and well thought out Health and Physical Education Curriculum for kids in grades one to eight. I was surprised at how forward thinking it was and if we ever need to go Forward Together in Ontario, lets do it now.  Implementing this curriculum will go a long way to making every child in school feel good about themselves and others.  

You can find the proposed curriculum here at the Toronto Star.  I tried finding it on the Ontario Government website but failed.  It could be there, I just couldn't find it.  

Here's what the Star editor said in a blog post about the new curriculum...
While I don't yet have the kind of detail on the curriculum that I'd like, I do want to point out where I think some individuals and organization are making inflammatory and incorrect assumptions about the spirit, tone and intention of this sort of education.
We've learned that kids will be discussing homosexuality in Grade 3. 
It's 2010. Don't a lot of our kids already have someone in their class who has two moms or two dads? That certainly applies for my son, Cameron. He's in Grade 1. He's known a lovely two-mom family since he was in daycare, and happily accepted an explanation that some people pick as their special person a member of the opposite sex and some people pick someone of their own gender.
For the sake not just of combating homophobia but of normalizing the experiences of school children who have same-sex parents, it's very worthwhile to discuss sexual orientation at an early age. Equally important: Getting the message to kids who may already be sensing some sort of "difference" in themselves compared to others, that they are OK no matter who they have a crush on.

Here is a break down on what Kids will learn in school

Grade 1 — Body parts, including genitalia using correct terminology
Grade 2 — Stages of human development
Grade 3 — Healthy relationships, differences and how they make humans unique (discussion could include sexual orientation, physical abilities, cultural values)
Grade 4 — Puberty and physical/social impact
Grade 5 — Reproductive system, menstruation, spermatogenesis, emotional stresses of puberty
Grade 6 — Emotional, social and physical changes of adolescence (discussion could include wet dreams, erections, vaginal lubrication, masturbation)
Grade 7 — Delaying sexual activity, sexually transmitted infections, pregnancy and STI prevention, (possible discussion of oral sex, intercourse, anal intercourse)
Grade 8 – Making decisions about sexual activity; sexual health/abstinence/safe sex; gender identity (male/female/transgendered/transsexual)
Now that looks like a good plan. Let's do it Premier McGuinty. Your public servants have done a great job on this, we need you to be Premier Dad now.

1 comment:

Skinny Dipper said...

I just read the now-defunct proposed Health curriculum through the Toronto Star. As a teacher myself, the proposals seem to want students to learn some concepts of sexual health in the earlier grades. However, this primarily means that students will learn the correct terminology to different body parts, and will be more forthright about discussing issues related to bullying such as calling someone "gay/a faggot/homo." I do believe strongly that teachers will have their students participate in discussions that are appropriate to their grade levels. Contrary to those opposed to the proposed curriculum, students in the primary (and even junior) grades will not learn about sexual positions. They may learn about activities that boys or girls like such as hockey or ballet, and then discuss whether or not boys and girls can participate in all activities.

As I have probably mentioned in privious comments, even without the proposed changes in the Health curriculum, teachers and students can read and discuss issues related to sexual orientation and gender identity as well as religious celebrations, Black History Month, and Chinese New Year. Most teachers currently choose not to do so.