The Benton County School District (Priority 1) is the first district in the state to adopt the Creating Healthy and Responsible Teens (CHART) Sex Education Policy. District Superintendent Patrick Washington informed me that the school board voted to adopt the policy this past Tuesday (5/10). With the policy in place, the district will implement “Abstinence-Plus” sex education during the 2011-12 school year, one year before the new state requirement. The new sex education law, which was passed this year, requires all public schools to teach “Abstinence-Only” or the more-comprehensive “Abstinence-Plus” sex education by the 2012-13 school year.

In the coming weeks, the Benton County School District will select the sex ed curricula they will use for the upcoming year. The Mississippi State Department of Health (MSDH) will provide teacher training and technical assistance throughout the process.  MSF will also create and implementation guide for districts that adopt the CHART policy.  And with federal grant funds in place, Benton County will implement this policy at no cost to the district.

Several other districts are moving forward on policy adoption as well.  We will keep you posted as we hear from other school district.

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