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Sunday, January 21, 2007

A Snapshot of Sex Education in Indiana

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Kathleen Baldwin MSW, vice president of education and training for Planned Parenthood of Indiana, will present “Get Real Indiana: A Snapshot of Sex Education in Indiana Schools,” at 7 p.m. Monday, February 5, in Carter Hall. Baldwin will explore the following questions:

• What sex education does Indiana require in the public schools?
• What kinds of teaching methods are most appropriate?
• What challenges do teachers and parents face?
• What does the research about sex education tell us?
• What do our students need to know? What kinds of questions do they ask?

Baldwin manages Planned Parenthood’s professional training and community education programs, which seek to increase understanding of sexuality as an integral aspect of human development. Important parts of community education efforts of Planned Parenthood of Indiana include peer education, community outreach, and a resource center.

She is on the faculty of the Indiana University Graduate School of Social Work and the IU Physical Education department, where she teaches Human Sexuality. She is one of only six sexuality educators in Indiana certified by the American Association of Sex Educators, Counselors, and Therapists (AASECT).

The program is sponsored by the USI Gender Studies, Health Services, and Nursing programs, the Social Work and Teacher Education departments, and Spectrum, an organization for Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender (GLBT) USI students and friends.

“Obviously sex education in our public schools is a hot topic,” said Dr. Maurice Hamington, assistant professor of philosophy. “The number of programs teaching abstinence only is on the rise, and all the statistics show that they simply don’t work. Our speaker is going to provide some data on the status of sex education in the state and the effectiveness of different kinds of programs. This is the right time for us to do this kind of thing.”

The program is free and open to the public. Area high schools have been invited. For more information, contact Hamington at 812/464-1722.



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