There’s no question that the provincial government majorly fumbled the ball last week when they rolled out the new sex education curriculum and then promptly withdrew it as a result of mass complaints.
There was no shortage of rants and raves along with media-fed misinformation about the curriculum — so understandably, the general public was left confused about the proposed changes.
For those of you curious about what some of the changes were to be – here is a general overview. Keep in mind that ALL of these are suggestions for educators. In other words, the sample discussions are meant to be guidelines.
GRADE 1 – proper names for body parts and introduction to hygiene
GRADE 2 – stages of development (i.e. overview of life cycle and body changes — as in when you get older you get taller, get wrinkles, etc)
GRADE 3 – physical and emotional development. Different types of relationships, accepting differences, being inclusive, communicating openly, showing respect (with regards to all kinds of differences including orientation and identity), different types of family structures
GRADE 4 – introduction to puberty (i.e. physical, emotional and social changes).
GRADE 5 – reproductive system (i.e. menstruation, spermatogenesis).
GRADE 6 – development of self-concept, laying the foundation for healthy relationships. More discussion around physiological changes that happen during puberty (i.e. erections and vaginal lubrication)
GRADE 7 – Continuation of self-concept (introduce ideas around gender identity, sexual orientation). Discussion of abstinence as the only true safe sex – and how STI’s can be contracted through oral, anal, and vaginal sex.
GRADE 8 – Decisions about sexual activity (i.e. the benefits, risks, and drawbacks that relationships involving different degrees of sexual intimacy can pose); Gender identity (i.e. male, female, transgendered, transsexual, intersex) and sexual orientation (e.g., heterosexual, gay, lesbian, bisexual), and identify factors that can help individuals of all identities and orientations develop a positive self-concept)
Outspoken, hip, irreverent – yet enlightening, Cynthia Loyst is a TV host, advice columnist & relationship coach who likes to ask uncomfortable questions. She’s also a certified life/relationship coach and guest expert on a variety of shows including The Marilyn Denis Show, CTV Newsnet and Etalk. Follow Cynthia on Twitter.