Well, it didn’t take long for the newspaper’s editorial department to come to the aid of the Augusta School Board and Family Planning (“Augusta schools handled sensitive issue appropriately”). This was just a mere two days after my letter was printed, criticizing that action (June 18).

In that editorial, there were several statements that could be strongly questioned: “… distribution of free contraception does not increase sexual activity” — and “after the program is in place, the board should revisit the issue of parental consent” — and, oh yes, “parents need to trust the school.”

Taking a pointed swipe at abstinence education, the newspaper said that “research shows a correlation between abstinence-only education in schools and higher teenage pregnancy and birth rates.”

This is incomplete and erroneous research; and I’m guessing that it came from a family planning organization and other such biased groups, which are strongly opposed to abstinence.

It’s a well known fact that family planning, with its sexual risk reduction agendas, has dominated sex education programs in our schools for well over 30 years. And what are the results? According to the editorial, “Maine’s teen pregnancy rate is higher than the national average … and Augusta’s rate ranks among the highest in the state.”

Even data from the Centers for Disease Control shows that these sexual risk reduction programs are failing to deliver!

Conversely, recent data from the CDC, according to an analysis by the National Abstinence Education Association, shows that when there was more of an emphasis on sexual risk avoidance through abstinence education, teens made healthier decisions regarding sex.

This data could not have been released at a more beneficial time for the sexual health of our youth. Augusta parents, please take note.

Pat Truman

Hallowell


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