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Old 10-21-2007, 12:18 PM   #46
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Originally posted by BonosSaint
That wasn't my point. I just think it often became an easy fix, too easily prescribed.
Ok.
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Old 10-21-2007, 12:35 PM   #47
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[Q]Beck argued that the plan makes it too easy for girls to have sex and takes power away from the parent, a sentiment some parents agree with.[/Q]

Since when did a parent have any power over their kid having sex?
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Old 10-21-2007, 02:19 PM   #48
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^ Exactly, that was my reaction too.
Quote:
Originally posted by Liesje
why should all the focus go towards condoms/guys/penises and ignore the option that empowers the girls AND tackles many other issues at the same time (little kids with periods so heavy they have to miss school every month, etc)?
I don't see how not insisting on your right to contraceptive methods that also protect you against STDs is "empowering." Sure, if you're in a committed intimate relationship then it may make sense for you and your partner to get tested together then consider relying on the Pill exclusively, but with this age group that's a very unlikely scenario. I appreciate the fact that the Pill also has useful non-contraceptive functions in treating dysmenorrhea, endometriosis, etc., but the school committee has been very clear that what led them to perceive a need for this was the clinic staff's finding that some of their student patients were sexually active but not using any birth control, not a trend of girls with painful periods being unable to secure medical treatment for it. I don't have a problem with them prescribing the Pill for those reasons, but I do have a problem with them not prioritizing STD prevention as well as pregnancy prevention with sexually active kids that young.
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Old 10-21-2007, 03:26 PM   #49
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The "Western World" countries really have a lack of education about STD's which is extremely dangerous.
The infection rate with HIV and AIDS is increasing again since more and more young people think it's curable. Many don't even know that there is a difference between being HIV+ and having developed AIDS.
Infections with tripper and syphilis, long been nearly erased, are increasing again as well. When the Iron Curtain came down the prostitution in Eastern European countries flourished, bringing those diseases back to the West. Since we don't get educated about those diseases many don't care about it at all, and so numbers of infections are growing rapidly, against to a large extent among young people who don't care about it.
Tripper and syphilis are known to some people because those diseases get mentioned in various films, but those are usually referring to the 60's or earlier, or it's a reference to Al Capone. That these diseases are coming back is unknown to most people here.
Other diseases we usually don't hear about. We learn about the human body, about HIV/AIDS (still this misbelief about that being curable) and that the pill and condoms are necessary to prevent girls from getting pregnant and both from infecting themself with HIV or AIDS.

Another thing, besides schools, is billboards promoting condoms, but that's abou it.

Most other STD's are never heard of at all.
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Old 10-21-2007, 03:42 PM   #50
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Quote:
Originally posted by yolland


I don't see how not insisting on your right to contraceptive methods that also protect you against STDs is "empowering." Sure, if you're in a committed intimate relationship then it may make sense for you and your partner to get tested together then consider relying on the Pill exclusively, but with this age group that's a very unlikely scenario. I appreciate the fact that the Pill also has useful non-contraceptive functions in treating dysmenorrhea, endometriosis, etc., but the school committee has been very clear that what led them to perceive a need for this was the clinic staff's finding that some of their student patients were sexually active but not using any birth control, not a trend of girls with painful periods being unable to secure medical treatment for it. I don't have a problem with them prescribing the Pill for those reasons, but I do have a problem with them not prioritizing STD prevention as well as pregnancy prevention with sexually active kids that young.
Yes, I do see the error in that (bolded part). I guess I was just hoping everyone would see it as more of a general issue of health & hygiene and not just sex this sex that sex sex sex. If they are really committed to STD prevention I hope they are also encouraging the Gardasil vaccine as well. In my mind, a comprehensive sex ed program wouldn't have to prioritize one specific thing, but be able to educate kids about everything (STDs, health [I wonder how many 11 year olds fully understand what is going on in their bodies], pregnancy, hygiene, etc) and provide a variety of options for everyone.
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Old 10-21-2007, 04:08 PM   #51
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I would say it's more useful and important than learning every tiny bone by heart which you have forgotten about the minute you have finished your exam.
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Old 10-26-2007, 09:56 AM   #52
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A can of worms...

Portland Press Herald

Portland's school-based health centers have not been reporting all illegal sexual activity involving minors as required by law, but they will from now on, city officials said Thursday.

Cumberland County District Attorney Stephanie Anderson questioned the health centers' reporting practices after the Portland School Committee decided last week to offer prescription birth control at the King Middle School health center.

The King Student Health Center has offered comprehensive reproductive health care, including providing condoms and testing for sexually transmitted diseases, since it opened in 2000. The school serves students in grades 6 to 8, ages 11 to 15.

Maine law prohibits having sex with a person under age 14, regardless of the age of the other person involved, Anderson said.

A health care provider must report all known or suspected cases of sex with minors age 13 and under to the state Department of Health and Human Services, she said. Abuse also must be reported to the appropriate district attorney's office, Anderson said, when the suspected perpetrator is someone other than the minor's parent or guardian.

"When it's somebody under age 14, it is a crime and it must be reported," Anderson said. "The health care provider has no discretion in the matter. It's up to the district attorney to decide."

Anderson said she contacted Portland officials after she learned that some employees of the health centers, which are operated by the city's Public Health Division, believed they could decide whether a child's sexual activity constituted criminal abuse.

In fact, if a child under age 14 was having consensual sex with someone of a similar age, health center employees weren't reporting it to the proper authorities, said City Attorney Gary Wood.

Anderson said doctors and other health care providers in private practice may falsely believe they have similar leeway, but they must follow the same laws.

"It's clear that it's going on all the time," Anderson said. "Either the law is going to be enforced or it needs to be changed. I don't think a law should be routinely violated."

Portland's six school-based health centers had no formal policy on reporting sexual activity involving students under age 14, said Douglas Gardner, director of Portland's Department of Health and Human Services.

Gardner said it's unclear whether any health center employee failed to report suspected cases to the state Department of Health and Human Services, but they did fail to report cases to Anderson's office.

"Moving forward, we will report to the letter of the law," Gardner said.

He noted that the reporting issue applies to few students. Five King students reported being sexually active last year, and school officials said they were all ages 14 and 15.

Although Portland officials intend to comply with the law, exactly what the law requires remains unclear, Wood said. Having sex with a 13-year-old is clearly illegal, he said, but the law doesn't address the possibility of the other person involved being 13 years old, too.

"I think (Anderson) has raised a legitimate point," Wood said. "I'm just not sure that consensual sexual activity (between two 13-year-olds) constitutes abuse."

If Anderson's office received a report of two 13-year-olds having sex, she said, each minor would be considered a victim and a perpetrator and the case likely wouldn't be prosecuted.

Wood said he plans to seek guidance from Maine Attorney General Steven Rowe. Rowe is married to Amanda Rowe, Portland's head school nurse and a proponent of the King contraception proposal.

The School Committee voted 7-2 last week to expand contraceptive offerings at King, with John Coyne, chairman, and Benjamin Meiklejohn in opposition.

Both opponents are developing proposals that would clarify the School Department's role in offering reproductive health care at the middle school, including a possible age limit of 14 and up. The committee is expected to take up the issue Nov. 7.

"If there are legal issues with providing reproductive health care at King, I would want them to be brought forward to the board and explained to make sure that it's provided in a safe and legal way," Coyne said.

Anderson said she will wait to see if the committee makes changes before deciding how to proceed.

Meiklejohn said Anderson's concern confirms his own. "I'm not opposed to the services being provided, but we need to have public confidence in whatever we do," he said.

Andrew MacNeal, a lawyer with the Maine Medical Association, called Anderson's interpretation of Maine law on this issue "conservative."

"I might argue that the health care provider has more discretion in reporting abuse," MacNeal said. "Always, a physician's first obligation is to the patient."

MacNeal said it's not practical to apply the law this way to all health care practitioners, especially when many of them wouldn't consider consensual sex between two 12-year-olds to be a crime.

MacNeal and Gardner questioned whether strict reporting requirements might have a chilling effect on young people seeking health care.

"If we're reporting to the district attorney's office, it brings it to a whole other level," Gardner said. "I don't know what that would do to the comfort level of young people coming to us for health care."
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Old 10-26-2007, 09:33 PM   #53
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I heard about this on the news. Personally, I think middle schoolers are too young to be given birth control, for a variety of reasons:

1. They don't have the maturity level to deal with it
2. Parents should be involved in their children's lives, and should be making this decision, not the school
3. It promotes the issue of having sex for minors, and excuses it as well. More teens will be having sex, since there won't be any consequences.
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Old 10-26-2007, 09:48 PM   #54
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Quote:
Originally posted by ShipOfFools
I heard about this on the news. Personally, I think middle schoolers are too young to be given birth control, for a variety of reasons:

1. They don't have the maturity level to deal with it
2. Parents should be involved in their children's lives, and should be making this decision, not the school
3. It promotes the issue of having sex for minors, and excuses it as well. More teens will be having sex, since there won't be any consequences.
How does this make sense?

Do you think the school is handing out birth control to everyone? Do you think the school is handing out brith control to students who aren't already or thinking of having sex?

Just think of the consequences if this school didn't help...
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Old 10-26-2007, 10:12 PM   #55
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Quote:
Originally posted by BonoVoxSupastar


How does this make sense?

Do you think the school is handing out birth control to everyone? Do you think the school is handing out brith control to students who aren't already or thinking of having sex?

Just think of the consequences if this school didn't help...
That's true, but the parents should be involved in their child's lives, too. If the parents specifically don't want their children recieving birth control, they should have some say in that.
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Old 10-26-2007, 10:40 PM   #56
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Quote:
Originally posted by ShipOfFools


That's true, but the parents should be involved in their child's lives, too. If the parents specifically don't want their children recieving birth control, they should have some say in that.
I agree, but the school isn't saying "we're cutting the parents out", they're just throwing out the life peserver when the parents might not be looking.

Put it this way, if the school wasn't doing it, what would happen? More than likely the kids would still have sex and more than likely without protection.

How many of us came to our parents and told them about the first time we were going to have sex?
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Old 10-26-2007, 11:07 PM   #57
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Quote:
Originally posted by ShipOfFools
I heard about this on the news. Personally, I think middle schoolers are too young to be given birth control, for a variety of reasons:

1. They don't have the maturity level to deal with it
2. Parents should be involved in their children's lives, and should be making this decision, not the school
3. It promotes the issue of having sex for minors, and excuses it as well. More teens will be having sex, since there won't be any consequences.
1. If you are mature enough to be having your periods, you are mature enough for sex and having babies and wanting to prevent babies or having periods.

2. The school is not forcing anyone to take any pills. When I was still on my parent's insurance they did not cover my birth control (did not take it for sex reasons) so they would have been glad for an easier way to get it through school. Plus, girls can already get free tests and treatments from clinics, so it's not a new concept.

3. No consequences? Birth control pills do not prevent ANY form of STD, nor are they 100% foolproof as far as pregnancies, not to mention the emotional consequences young kids often are left with..... Personally, I think the availability of birth control pills "promotes" sex about as much as parents talking to kids about sex promotes the activity. Yeah...not so much.
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Old 10-27-2007, 12:06 AM   #58
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Quote:
Originally posted by ShipOfFools
If the parents specifically don't want their children recieving birth control, they should have some say in that.
Didn't the original article say that the parents had to give permission for their daughters to be enrolled?
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Old 10-27-2007, 01:46 AM   #59
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Quote:
Originally posted by ShipOfFools
2. Parents should be involved in their children's lives, and should be making this decision, not the school
I agree, parents should be more involved. The problem is, however, that there's a lot of them who aren't. They absolutely refuse to talk about sex with their children, they just say, "DON'T DO IT!" and never really explain why. Yeah, that solved the problem. So if they're not going to get involved, someone else has to. And I'd rather it be a place where kids can get the proper education on such things than allowing kids to learn about it through potentially dangerous mistakes.

Quote:
Originally posted by ShipOfFools
3. It promotes the issue of having sex for minors, and excuses it as well. More teens will be having sex, since there won't be any consequences.
Sorry, no. Most kids, once they fully realize the potential consequences of what's involved in sex, are going to think twice about just jumping into bed with anyone. Will there still be a few kids who do this once they have the Pill and other things of that nature? Sure. But a lot more, once they're treated like mature adults who people feel can handle knowing the pros and cons of what they want to do, will act like mature adults and wait. Kids will probably listen to adults more once those adults actually treat them like responsible young people.

Matter of fact, aren't there studies that say that kids who get involved in abstinence-only programs have a higher risk of becoming sexually active as teens?

Angela
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