Which education has more impact on a community: sex or civics?

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This topic contains 2 replies, has 2 voices, and was last updated by  Faye Newsham 7 years, 3 months ago.

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  • #138114

    Daniel Bevarly

    So New York City public schools will teach mandatory sex education classes to all middle- and high school students, part of a citywide initiative. (See story).

    Surfing the city school’s web site found a smattering of civics and government studies buried among the social studies curriculum. While a common theme among both topics might be responsibility, I’m wondering which has a greater impact* on a community, and therefore which should have a greater emphasis, nay, mandatory requirement attached to it?

    * “Impact” should be defined here, but I’ll leave that open to your interpretation.

  • #138118

    Faye Newsham

    Daniel – an interesting point. I’ll argue that both are really, really important but that Sex Ed has proven to be where the only discussions on dealing with our fellow humans is really done. It is also a financial question. For a city, a bunch of teen parents with no education has far ranging, immediate financial problems associated with it. Civics is a long-term concern. Sex Ed is typically intertwined with some aspects of another course, frequently health. The civics of it actually comes up more than in the social studies courses, I think. I was a citizen participant in reviewing Sex Ed curricula for my county a few years back and both my kids took the different versions. We would discuss what they had seen and heard in class (one had the old curriculum, the other had the new) and our discussions frequently touched on civic responsibilities (which I feel mostly stemmed from what they were discusing at school).

    I hate to see one curricula traded for the other. I think both are really important and should be intertwined even more (or at least add more civics to sex ed!). I’m all for making civics a mandatory requirement for every layer of school. I also think science-based information and discussion of realistic social situation and impact of actions should be mandatory in all middle and high school Sex Ed programs.

  • #138116

    Daniel Bevarly

    Faye – Excellent points. This question has elements of an “apples and oranges” dilemma so I’m not trying to gauge one over the other. Different communities have different challenges and must respond responsibly to them. However, both topics provide linkages or responses to a form of behavioral “decay” occurring locally and nationally, IMO. They also operate inversely of each other. One is targeted to a problem affecting individuals, yet as you point out can negatively impact a community, while the other begins with broader community in mind and translates down to the involvement of the individual. There is a need for formal education for both, and solutions that must be put into practice to have a positive impact on the individual and on society.

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