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Health

HEALTH EDUCATION IN CALIFORNIA

HEALTH EDUCATION IN CALIFORNIA

 
California Department of Education Health Education Framework
 
The Health Education Framework is aligned to the 2008 California Health Education Content Standards, which support the development of knowledge, skills, and attitudes in eight overarching standards: (1) essential health concepts; (2) analyzing health influences; (3) accessing valid health information; (4) interpersonal communication; (5) decision making; (6) goal setting; (7) practicing health-enhancing behaviors; and (8) health promotion in six content areas of health education: nutrition and physical activity; growth, development, and sexual health; injury prevention and safety; alcohol, tobacco, and other drugs; mental, emotional, and social health; and personal and community health in the 2008 Health Education Content Standards.
 
The California Department of Education (CDE), Instructional Quality Commission (IQC), and State Board of Education (SBE) recently revised the Health Education Curriculum Framework for California Public Schools, Transitional Kindergarten Through Grade Twelve (Health Education Framework), which was adopted by the SBE in May 2019. Additional details and the most recent, May 2019, revised draft are available on CDE’s website here.
 
California Healthy Youth Act
Enacted January 1, 2016, The California Healthy Youth Act (CHYA) integrates the instruction of comprehensive sexual health education and HIV prevention education. The bill renamed the prior California Comprehensive Sexual Health and HIV/AIDS Prevention Education Act to the California Healthy Youth Act. The bill requires school districts to ensure that all pupils in grades seven to twelve, inclusive, receive comprehensive sexual health education and HIV prevention education at least once in middle school and at least once in high school.
 
Per the California Department of Education, the California Healthy Youth Act has five primary purposes:
 
  • To provide pupils with the knowledge and skills necessary to protect their sexual and reproductive health from HIV and other sexually transmitted infections and from unintended pregnancy;
  • To provide pupils with the knowledge and skills they need to develop healthy attitudes concerning adolescent growth and development, body image, gender, sexual orientation, relationships, marriage, and family;
  • To promote understanding of sexuality as a normal part of human development;
  • To ensure pupils receive integrated, comprehensive, accurate, and unbiased sexual health and HIV prevention instruction and provide educators with clear tools and guidance to accomplish that end;
  • To provide pupils with the knowledge and skills necessary to have healthy, positive, and safe relationships and behaviors

State law defines comprehensive sexual health education as “education regarding human development and sexuality, including education on pregnancy, contraception, and sexually transmitted infections” (EC § 51931[b]). HIV prevention education is defined as “instruction on the nature of human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) and AIDS, methods of transmission, strategies to reduce the risk of HIV infection, and social and public health issues related to HIV and AIDS” (EC § 51931[d]).
 
Information regarding how CHYA is different from the Health Framework can be found here.
 
Additional information regarding the CHYA can be found on the California Department of Education's website.  
Health Education in SDUHSD

Health Education in SDUHSD

Middle School Health
For the 2022-2023 school year, the units in sexual health education will be taught in middle school science courses beginning in the spring 2023 semester. This complies with the CHYA mandate, which requires that this content be taught at least once in middle school and once in high school. SDUHSD parents/guardians will receive a notification letter at least 14 days prior to the start of this instruction,  in compliance with the CHYA mandate: “Prior to providing instruction in comprehensive sexual health education or HIV prevention education, Education Code (EC) 51938 requires school districts to notify parents of the instruction and to make materials available for parents to review."
 
Middle School Health Lessons
Middle school health lesson topics are included in the table below. Links to lessons and activities will be posted in the Spring, within the required timeline, for parent/guardian and student access.
 
Unit*
Classroom Culture and Climate
Growth and Development
Healthy Relationships
Pregnancy and Parenting
Contraception and Abstinence
HIV and Sexually Transmitted Infections (STIs)
Sex Abuse, Violence, and Human Trafficking
 
*Under the California Healthy Youth Act, all comprehensive sexual health and HIV prevention instruction and materials in grades K-12 must be inclusive of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and/or queer (LGBTQ) students. Learn more here​.
 
High School Health
Health content is currently delivered as part of the first-year, 9th-grade Physical Education (PE) courses at our district high schools. It may also be taken in later grade levels for students who move into our district and have not yet completed the content. Students enrolled in PE courses with health will access the health curriculum through an online platform, Edgenuity. More information can be found in the teacher's syllabus and a course profile example for Year One PE can be found here.
 
Unit, Lessons & Lesson Objectives
Unit:  Growth, Development, and Sexual Health
Lesson: Puberty, Gender Identity, and Sexual Orientation
  • Describe factors that influence sexual development, relationships, and behaviors.
  • Explain the role of the endocrine system in adolescent development.
  • Identify individual differences in gender identity.
  • Identify individual differences in sexual orientation.
Lesson: Abstinence, Safe Sex, and Making Informed Decisions
  • Compare and contrast a variety of FDA-approved contraceptives.
  • Describe the benefits of abstinence.
  • Identify factors that influence one’s perceptions about sexual activity.
  • Identify ways to maintain sexual or reproductive health.
Lesson:  Conception, Pregnancy, and Birth
  • Describe practices that are important for the health of a pregnant woman and her fetus.
  • Evaluate the physical, social, emotional, legal, and economic effects of teen pregnancy and parenting.
  • Explain how conception occurs and the stages of pregnancy.
Lesson: Sexually Transmitted Infections, HIV, and AIDS
  • Analyze reliable sources of information regarding sexual health.
  • Describe medical care for sexually transmitted infections.
  • Identify methods to avoid or reduce the risk of a sexually transmitted infection.
  • Identify the effects of sexually transmitted infections.
Unit: Healthy Relationships
Lesson:  Skills for Healthy Relationships
  • Describe strategies for communicating in healthy ways.
  • Explain the role of empathy in building and maintaining healthy relationships.
  • Identify character traits that promote healthy relationships.
Lesson:  Healthy Relationships: Dating and Marriage
  • Describe how to communicate effectively with a romantic partner.
  • Describe strategies to prevent and respond to incidents of domestic violence.
  • Describe the effects of being in an unhealthy romantic relationship.
  • Explain the characteristics of a healthy romantic relationship.
Lesson: Conflict Resolution and Decision-Making Skills
  • Describe how to apply a thoughtful decision-making process to a dangerous, risky, or emotionally charged situation.
  • Explain how to effectively respond to peer pressure.
  • Explain healthy communication and conflict resolution skills.
  • Identify options that exist when communication fails or breaks down.
Lesson:  Sexual Harassment and Sexual Assault
  • Define sexual assault and sexual harassment.
  • Explain the effects of sexual assault, sexual harassment, and molestation.
  • Identify resources that provide information, counseling, testing, and other information related to sexual violence and harassment.
Lesson: Human Trafficking in the US
  • Describe how to safely seek assistance if human trafficking is suspected.
  • Describe the scope of human trafficking in the US.
  • Explain how to reduce the risk of human trafficking.
  • Explain methods traffickers use to identify and recruit targets.
Lesson: Healthy Family Relationships
  • Describe the characteristics of healthy family relationships.
  • Explain how family relationships affect well-being.
  • Identify common causes of conflict between family members.
Lesson: Understanding Relationships with Peers
  • Describe the characteristics of healthy peer relationships.
  • Describe the positive and negative effects of social networking on peer relationships.
  • Explain how peer relationships affect well-being.
  • Identify common causes of conflict between peers
Lesson: Parenting
  • Describe the benefits of waiting to become a parent until adulthood.
  • Describe the positive and negative effects of parenting choices on a child.
  • Explain the responsibilities of parenting.
Frequently Asked Questions & Resources

Frequently Asked Questions & Resources

Please consult the following resources for answers to frequently asked questions and how to best support your student in accessing the school health curriculum.
  • Frequently Asked Questions: This document provides answers to commonly asked questions and is divided into three sections: (1) General CHYA Health Education Questions, (2) Opt-Out Questions, and (3) Parent Resources. SDUHSD will continue to update this document as new questions from the community are shared.
  • California Department of Education (CDE) FAQ for Sexual Education, HIV/AIDS, and STDs: This document provides answers to frequently asked questions (FAQ) regarding comprehensive sexual health education, HIV/AIDS and STD instruction.
  • Know Your Rights (English/Español): As required by the CHYA, public school districts must provide students with “information about local resources and student rights to accessing sexual and reproductive health care and assistance with sexual assault and intimate partner violence. EC § 51934(a)(8).”
 
Parent Notification of CHYA Content
School districts may notify parents/guardians at the beginning of the school year or at least 14 days prior to instruction. Districts shall allow parents to excuse their child from the comprehensive sexual health education and HIV prevention instruction upon receiving a signed, written request, using a passive consent or "opt-out" policy for the state-required comprehensive sexual health education and HIV prevention instruction. Districts shall not adopt an active consent or "opt-in" policy for parental consent for required comprehensive sexual health education and HIV prevention instruction.” -Excerpt from Parent Notification” information tab on California Department of Education website.
 
Opt-Out Information
Per California Education Code EC § 51938[a], “A parent or guardian of a pupil has the right to excuse their child from all or part of comprehensive sexual health education, HIV prevention education, and assessments related to that education through a passive consent (“opt-out”) process.” Additionally, per Ed Code 51240: (a) If any part of a school’s instruction in health conflicts with the religious training and beliefs of a parent or guardian of a pupil, the pupil, upon written request of the parent or guardian, shall be excused from the part of the instruction that conflicts with the religious training and beliefs. (b) For purposes of this section, “religious training and beliefs” includes personal moral convictions. (Added by Stats. 2004, Ch. 896, Sec. 49. Effective September 29, 2004.) For additional opt-out details, please consult the “Opt-Out” section of the Health Frequently Asked Questions document.
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This website is maintained by Jennifer McCluan, SDUHSD Instructional Specialist for Science and Health. 
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looking for information on health services or DISTRICT nurses?

Please visit the Health Services Department webpage.