Special to the Independent
Senator Sal DiDomenico recently testified in support of his Healthy Youth Act bill before the Joint Committee on Education. A few weeks ago, the state’s Board of Elementary and Secondary Education unanimously adopted a new health education framework that includes comprehensive standards for sex education. While this was welcome news, Senator DiDomenico emphasized that we still need to pass the Healthy Youth Act to deliver lasting progress for students in the Commonwealth.
“It was inspiring to highlight the importance of my Healthy Youth Act bill alongside passionate parents, students, educators, health care providers, and advocates from across our state,” said Senator Sal DiDomenico, lead sponsor of the Senate bill. “This common-sense proposal is popular throughout Massachusetts and will ensure our children can access medically accurate and age-appropriate sex and relationship education.”
Passage of the Healthy Youth Act will strengthen the impact of the new health education framework that the Board of Elementary and Secondary Education approved in September by:
1) Ensuring that if sex and relationship education is taught in Massachusetts public schools, it is taught using a comprehensive curriculum that adheres to the framework.
2) Requiring the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE) to collect data on sex education taught in public schools.
3) Requiring DESE to review and update the framework at least every ten years to ensure the sex education guidelines remain comprehensive and are meeting the needs of students.