Would require charter schools to ensure that all pupils in grades 7 to 12, inclusive, receive comprehensive sexual health education and HIV prevention education, as specified. By imposing additional requirements on charter schools, this bill would impose a state-mandated local program. This bill contains other related provisions and other existing laws.
AAP Positional Letter
April 1, 2018
Honorable Shirley Weber
State Capitol, P.O. Box 942849
Sacramento, CA 94249
RE: AB 2601 (Weber): Pupil instruction: sexual health education: charter schools
AAP-CA Position: Support
Dear Assemblymember Weber:
The American Academy of Pediatrics, California (AAP-CA), representing over 5,000 California pediatricians, supports your proposed legislation AB 2601 (Weber), which extends the requirement that all pupils in grades 7 to 12 receive comprehensive sexual health education and HIV prevention education so as to include students of charter schools, as well as public school districts.
Comprehensive sex education has been shown to delay sexual activity as well as increase condom and contraceptive use amongst youth who are already active. Since the California Healthy Youth Act was enacted, the percentage of sexually active California students who use birth control has increased, and the percentage of students who had multiple sexual partners decreased. However, the California Healthy Youth Act does not currently apply to charter schools, thus limiting the population that benefit from it. California has the highest number of students enrolled in charter schools of any state in the nation, and many charter schools either do not provide sex education or leave out crucial topics such as birth control, sexual orientation, and how to talk with parents about these very personal concerns.
AB 2601 (Weber) would rectify this by extending the requirements of the California Healthy Youth Act to charter schools, thus assuring that thousands more California students would receive this critical instruction and thus be able to make more informed and responsible choices about their sexuality. This stands to improve the health and wellbeing of youth who avoid the consequences of unwanted pregnancies and STI transmission, as well as all those who learn to relate to their own sexuality and gender identities in a more comfortable and healthy way.
Pediatrician members of AAP California Chapters 1, 2, 3 and 4 across the state strongly support your proposed legislation AB 2601 (Weber). Thank you for your public service and leadership on behalf of the health and wellbeing of children, youth, and families in California.
Chief Executive Officer, American Academy of Pediatrics, California
cc: AAP-CA Leadership; Lobbyist Lydia Bourne