The truth behind teaching kids about sex and drugs
Doesn’t everyone want to learn to speak Mandarin? Is high school chemistry boring? Can kids talk about sex and drugs in English? These are all incredibly taboo topics some kids are asked to tackle in school.
And those are just some of the issues facing the education of students today. College admission counselors say more parents are asking them to challenge their children by pushing them to learn new things. Educators say it’s often because parents don’t believe that their children are competent at the subjects, or because they’re worried that their own kids might be poor in such fields.
Americans have always maintained that school is for everyone. Yet when they chose to have their children take more challenging classes or learn foreign languages, some people argue that those children are being punished.
The National Education Association (NEA) states that most modern forms of schooling are actually a waste of time. A new organization called Families For Excellent Schools (FES) estimates that over 30 percent of America’s children are underachieving and need extra help. “These students [are] deprived of any meaningful academic support that would allow them to realize their enormous potential,” said Heidi N. Siegel, executive director of FES, in a statement announcing their first National School Quality Day on Sept. 3.
The teachers who are happy with the change aren’t going to talk up the benefits of teaching kids about sex and drugs.
FES’ solution is quite simply to remove class discussions on these topics from the curriculum. In the new model, students would continue studying the material by reviewing the material with their teachers rather than learning by actually hearing about the subject from their peers. Many Americans agree that the new model would help improve the achievement of American students. While recent polls indicate that the public backs teachers on class topics like sex and drugs, there is a significant segment of the public that also believes parents should avoid discussing these topics with their children. Many people worry that if children learn about these topics in school, they’ll associate it with them being asked to do it in school and get them thinking that school is the proper place to talk about these topics.
While these concerns are understandable, it is important to remember that the teachers who are happy with the change aren’t going to talk up the benefits of teaching kids about sex and drugs. Parents will make this point before and after that class discussion, and it will go to the heart of who kids are at their core, and who they will be long after they graduate high school.
Some parts of FES’ plan are to be expected. There are many school districts where kids are seen in class, barefoot, wearing next to nothing and sometimes using a toilet seat because that’s the only way they can go to the bathroom, without the teachers asking them to help clean up. Parents of these children may be too embarrassed to talk about the conditions of their children’s school to have this discussion with their kids.
This is a shame, because the rest of the country could have benefited from a back-to-basics type of education without worrying about what their kids should and shouldn’t be learning.