January 08, 2012 | permalink
After complaints by a small group of religious-minded parents in New York’s Shenendehowa school district, visits by certified health educators from Planned Parenthood to the school’s middle and high school health classes have been temporarily halted. A parent involved in the local Corpus Christi Catholic Community, Maureen Silfer, complained to the school board that children were being shown condom demonstrations and being taught that abstinence could include “heavy petting.”
Planned Parenthood has been involved in the local classrooms for several decades, offering supplementary lessons about STD and pregnancy prevention. A subcommittee of the school board is currently reviewing the program with the possibility of reinstating it.
Silfer’s call to action in the Catholic Community’s bulletin read: “…PP targets youth and young adults, and educates them that any and all forms of sexual expression are not only valid but encouraged.”
Sexual health education has long been a target of religious groups, but one of the Planned Parenthood educators, Darren Cosgrove, said that the supplementary guest lectures get “glowing reviews” from teachers, many of whom allow parents to opt out if they don’t want their children to participate.