Fairfax County school board approves controversial changes to sex education policy

- School board members have voted on a new sex education policy in Fairfax County.

The vote came after a controversial meeting where people on both sides of the issue offered up passionate, and at times heated, testimony.

Supporters of the new sex education proposal said it is more reflective of the human experience. They believe it is more forward-thinking and inclusive of LGBTQ and transgender students.

But those against the proposed new curriculum say it goes too far – without teaching kids about some of the health risks.

One of the biggest changes will be to include more transgender curriculum. Fairfax County Public Schools will strike references to “biological sex” in the current curriculum and replace those references with “sex assigned at birth.”

The new curriculum would also expand lessons on the different types of contraception available to teenage girls. Those opposed to the new curriculum said it does not, however, include the risks associated with contraception.

The new curriculum would also teach students about pre-exposure prophylaxis, or PrEP, as it is known. Those in support said it is necessary for young men. Others feel it promotes unprotected sex.

The board also voted to change the language in the county's dress code policy to make it more gender neutral. References to cleavage, mid-drifts and blouses will be eliminated. Supporters pushed for the change because they say the current one unfairly targets girls.

The late-night vote came after board members originally considered delaying the vote due to the controversy. Ultimately though after much debate, the school board passed the proposed changes, which will be implemented next school year.

For more information on the entire Fairfax County Public Schools Sex Education Policy, visit https://www.boarddocs.com/vsba/fairfax/Board.nsf/Public.

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