Conservatives are sending abstinence-only curriculum into classrooms at increasing rates, and a new study shows these programs are not only ineffective but unethical. Congress and the Trump administration are working to reverse the trends of more comprehensive sexual education, which had begun to improve during the Obama administration.
WHAT THE STUDY SHOWS
A report published in September’s Journal of Adolescent Health (JAH) finds that sexual education programs promoting “abstinence only until marriage” (AOUM) fail on numerous levels based on scientific data. Researchers evaluated previous scientific research, reviewed articles on the subject, and data from human rights groups to reach their conclusions. This wealth of evidence starkly contrasts with the small number of studies that support abstinence-based education programs—long endorsed by conservative groups.