Children taught sex education are more likely to have intercourse younger, says study

Mail Online (UK) 2 February 10

Children given lessons in safe sex are more likely to have intercourse younger, a study has found. Those who have sex at a young age can also lack the maturity to use contraceptives, exposing them to the risk of sexually transmitted diseases and unwanted pregnancies. Teaching abstinence is the best way to avoid pregnancy and STDs, according to researchers. Children aged between 11 and 15 who were taught about safe sex were more likely to have sex in the following two years than those given a lesson on abstinence. In a study involving 600 African American students, half of the group taught sex education reported that they had sexual intercourse over the next two years compared to one third of the group given the abstinence lesson.
http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-1247954/Children-taught-sex-education-likely-intercourse-younger-says-study.html#

Abstinence-only programs might work, study says
Washington Post February 2, 2010
Sex education classes that focus on encouraging children to remain abstinent can persuade a significant proportion to delay sexual activity, researchers reported Monday in a landmark study that could have major implications for U.S. efforts to protect young people against unwanted pregnancies and sexually transmitted diseases. Only about a third of sixth- and seventh-graders who completed an abstinence-focused program started having sex within the next two years, researchers found. Nearly half of the students who attended other classes, including ones that combined information about abstinence and contraception, became sexually active.

The findings are the first clear evidence that an abstinence program could work. “I think we’ve written off abstinence-only education without looking closely at the nature of the evidence,” said John B. Jemmott III, a professor at the University of Pennsylvania who led the federally funded study. “Our study shows this could be one approach that could be used.” The research, published in the Archives of Pediatric & Adolescent Medicine, comes amid intense debate over how to reduce sexual activity, pregnancies, births and sexually transmitted diseases among children and teenagers. After falling for more than a decade, the numbers of births, pregnancies and STDs among U.S. teens have begun increasing.
http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2010/02/01/AR2010020102628.html
READ the study