Support sex-education in our schools
Dear Dr. Greene and School Board Members, As a physician and a parent, I am very concerned about the recent abrupt removal of Duval County School's sexual health and education curriculum. By removing this in the middle of the semester, you have created an educational void in terms of sexual health and education for over 125,000 students (more than 50,000 in middle and high school). These materials had been developed and vetted by experts and had been in place for almost a decade. The abrupt removal of these documents with no replacement is simply not acceptable. The materials should not be removed without a quality replacement in place. In other words, you might want to make adjustments, but to reinvent the wheel, as the vehicle is moving, is not practical nor in the best interests of the students. Please remember that one of your primary responsibilities is the health and safety of DCPS students.
In addition, any parent objecting to the content can opt out of the curriculum. I'm sure you are aware that Jacksonville has among the highest rates of sexually transmitted diseases in the entire country (45th in the country) and also has among the highest rates of maternal mortality, infant mortality and teen pregnancy in the state. It is bewildering and frankly appalling that you would deprive students of this important information, some of which, such as HIV or a pregnancy, could alter the entire trajectory of their lives. I urge you to please reconsider your decision and put these materials back in place until an acceptable alternative is found. Sincerely, Nancy Staats, MD Women's Health Committee chair for the Jacksonville chapter of the National Organization for Women
Andersen commented in the school board meeting that it was being pulled because of a vocal minority who don't want sex mentioned in the schools. Keep in mind that parents can opt their child out of the sex-ed curriculum. Here's the video link of her speech where she expressed her dismay that the supplemental material was being pulled from the agenda: