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article imageCondoms for grade 1 students sparks furor in Massachusetts

By Stephanie Dearing     Jun 25, 2010 in Lifestyle
Provincetown - A decision by a Provincetown elementary school to make condoms available to all its students -- even Grade 1 students - has generated anger across the state.
Even the Governor of Massachusets thinks the school has gone too far. CNN reported that Massachusetts Governor Deval Patrick said in a statement, "It is simply not age appropriate to have a program in place for such young children, not to mention not having parents of such young children involved. Comprehensive reproductive health education needs to be done in an age appropriate manner."
The to-do is about a decision by the Provincetown School District, which last week decided students of all ages should be able to access condoms from school nurses or counsellors -- without their parent's permission, reported WCVB TV. Along with the condoms will come information on how to use the birth control devices, Superintendent Beth Singer said. Under the policy, if a student asks for a condom, the nurse or counsellor cannot refuse the student.
One Massachusetts organization, the Massachusetts Family Institute, released a statement saying "Making condoms available to first graders bullies parents to submit to an agenda that promotes sexual promiscuity to innocent children at their most vulnerable age.
The Provincetown school committee's decision to force this radical and absurd policy demonstrates the lengths to which some will go to emasculate parents' rights and undermine the notion of encouraging children to delay sexual activity.
We hope that Provincetown parents challenge their school committee and take legal action if necessary to overturn this inane policy."
ABC reported Friday that the school is reconsidering the policy, limiting the condoms to students in Grade 5 and higher grades.
Some would say the school district is taking the right steps in thinking about promoting sexual health among students, although it may take years before such practices become socially acceptable.
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