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By LEANN McCOY
Staff Writer

1/13/2012

The Grenada School Board has decided to adopt an “abstinence only” form of sex education to be compliant with a new state law.
According to Lynne Russell, director of community services, school districts across the state are required to teach sex education at all levels under a new law signed last year by former Gov. Haley Barbour.
“We have always taught an abstinence program, and our current program is in compliance with the new state regulation,” Russell said during Tuesday’s meeting.
The current program will be expanded to include all grades. Before, it was just taught at the middle school and high school, according to Russell.
“The program will teach abstinence, but it will be at an appropriate level of understanding for each grade,” Russell said.
Under the new law, the decision was left up to each school board as to teaching abstinence-only education, which teaches that abstaining from sex is the best way, or a comprehensive class called abstinence-plus.
In the comprehensive setting, the student would learn that abstinence was the best way, but would be taught safe sex practices, about birth control and the different sexually-transmitted diseases.
The board unanimously approved the program with a motion by District Two Board Member Dr. David Braswell, seconded by District Three Board Member Arlene Conley.

Other business

The board entered into executive session with a motion by Braswell, seconded by Hughes, to discuss potential litigation and personnel issues.
According to Daigneault, no official action was taken, and he could not discuss specific details of the executive session.
This is at least the first known executive session the school board has entered into that excluded the taxpaying public.
All board members were present including District Five Board Member Keith Watson.

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