‘Abstinence Only’ School Changes Its Tune After Chlamydia Outbreak

A so-called “abstinence only” school in Texas made headlines earlier this year after a chlamydia outbreak affected approximately 10 percent of the school’s student body. Now, the Christian-based school is making changes to its curriculum in order to prevent future epidemics among their, clearly, sexually active pupils. Smashing Life reports that The Crane Independent School District has completely changed its tune.

The chlamydia outbreak experienced by students in the Texas school district has seemingly proven that “abstinence only” is not an effective way to educate young people on the biology and pathology surrounding human sexuality. In fact, the outbreak is so severe that it attracted attention from the CDC, which described the incident as a “health issue of epidemic proportions.”

Crane, Texas boasts a population of only 3,000 people. Their school district only comprises of 300 high school students — at least 20 of which have tested positive for chlamydia. KRMG News reported earlier this month that the superintendent of the school district had been considering changing the nonexistent sexual education curriculum. Now, it’s being reported that the district has changed from their purely “abstinence only” stance to something a little bit more realistic, given the circumstances.

According to Smashing Life, the school district is now planning to offer a sexual education course for all of its students, which lasts for three days. While Texas state law requires that sex ed be heavily focused on abstinence prior to marriage, the school will reportedly educate the students on the dangers of unprotected sex — which puts a damper on their “abstinence only,” preference. Of course, a chlamydia outbreak puts an even bigger damper on that idea. Meanwhile, the superintendent of the district, Jim Rummage, has publicly admitted that their “abstinence only” curriculum isn’t working.

“We do have an abstinence curriculum, and that evidently ain’t working. We need to do all we can, although it’s the parents’ responsibility to educate their kids on sexual education.”

The Daily Kos has reported that at least 11 different states in the U.S. have re-evaluated the effectiveness of “abstinence only” education, revealing that this style of curriculum does nothing to reduce sexual activity among teens. In fact, so-called “virginity pledgers” have been known to find “loopholes” by engaging in risky sexual behaviors, which only promote the spread of sexually transmitted infections. Anal sex and oral sex are among those so-called loopholes. Reportedly, teens taught in “abstinence only” environments tend to neglect the use of condoms, which not only doesn’t protect them against STDs, but leads to unplanned pregnancies.

This isn’t the first time the concept of “abstinence only” education has attracted negative attention. Bristol Palin has gotten pregnant at least twice out of wedlock while espousing this type of sex education — a fact that has attracted quite a bit of backlash in her direction.

Are you surprised that this Texas school district has changed its tune about “abstinence only” education?

[Photo via Google Maps]

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