Mary S. McLellan, MS, SRAS ~ Sexual Risk Avoidance Specialist
Will your child take Reducing the Risk this year in sex education? Parents, beware of this Comprehensive Sexuality Education (CSE) program. Reducing the Risk claims to protect students, but it grooms them to engage in risky sexual activity!
Reducing the Risk says that it’s an abstinence-based program, but it redefines abstinence to mean “choosing not to do any sexual activity that carries a risk for pregnancy or STD/HIV.” This completely made-up definition for abstinence means that as long as condoms and/or contraception are used and fluids are not exchanged, any type of sexual activity is acceptable and considered ‘safe!’
Family Watch International has developed “The CSE Harmful Elements Analysis Tool,” which includes 15 Harmful Elements typically found in CSE. Each program analyzed is scored based on actual harmful content from the curriculum, including workbooks, videos, and facilitator materials. So, what about Reducing the Risk?
Reducing the Risk (5th Edition) contains 15/15 of the harmful elements typically found in CSE curricula or materials. Reducing the Risk, and therefore anyone who teaches it, grooms children to engage in sexual activity that can have life-long consequences.
Reducing the Risk not only normalizes child sex, it teaches them how to consent to sex through role plays. Anal, oral and vaginal sex are promoted as long as condoms are used. Homosexual/bisexual behaviors and the child’s right to experience sexual pleasure are all a part of Reducing the Risk. Explicit details about orgasm for both boys and girls are described. Students are taught that even mutual masturbation is a harmless activity for children to engage.
Reducing the Risk goes far beyond condom demonstrations to teach students how to make using condoms fun, exciting, and romantic. The goal of Reducing the Risk is to avoid unprotected sex and DON’T GET PREGNANT! As long as a condom is used and fluids are not exchanged any type of sex at any age is acceptable. Also, students are assigned to “locate clinics” and to learn about their services, condoms, and other forms of contraception to “decide which method(s) might be best for them.”
Throughout Reducing the Risk, students are not given the option to return to an abstinent lifestyle, but simply to “avoid unprotected sex.” Teachers are also trained to be inclusive, to affirm transgender ideology and sexual orientation through role plays and group discussions. Anything goes!
Not surprising, Reducing the Risk undermines parental rights by denigrating traditional values. The program encourages students to decide for themselves when they are ready for sex. Children are told that they do not need their parent’s permission to get contraception or to be tested for STDs/HIV. They’re encouraged to take their boyfriends or girlfriends with them to family planning clinics. Parents are completely irrelevant!
Maybe this kind of content doesn’t bother you. But, don’t you think federally funded CSE programs should at least be proven effective at protecting your child’s sexual health? Reducing the Risk fails to protect students from life-long consequences of sexual activity.
Research findings released in 2018 on Reducing the Risk revealed that while students learned a lot about sex, that knowledge did not translate into reducing sexual activity, reducing sexual intercourse without protection, and it did not reduce pregnancies. “The program had no effects on refusal skills or intentions for future sexual behavior at either time point.” Yet, Reducing the Risk is still funded with your tax dollars and taught in half of U.S. states!
Parents, OPT OUT of Reducing the Risk while you still can! California has already mandated that parents cannot OPT OUT their students. They must take CSE programs like Reducing the Risk regardless of content or effectiveness.
Your child deserves better sexual health education than Reducing the Risk! Demand it!
The Protect Child Health Coalition (PCHC), a project of Family Watch International, is a national coalition of parents and professionals. PCHC exists to provide you with the information, tools and resources you need to protect your children.