Does abstinence education work ?

Researchers studied four abstinence education programs, randomly assigning 2,057 adolescents to either participate in the program or not participate, and tracking these teens for up to six years. They found that kids who participated in abstinence education programs were no less likely than the control group to have sex in the following years. Slightly less than half of each group remained abstinent to the reevaluation, and 56% of abstinence education participants had been abstinent for the last 12 months, as opposed to 55% of the control group. The difference was not statistically significant. The average age of first intercourse (for those who reported intercourse) was 14.9 years for both groups. Abstinence education participants were also no more likely to have unprotected sex than kids who didn't go through the programs.
What can I say? Education is one thing, environment is another, and human nature is a different matter.


Anonymous said...

"Youth were enrolled in the study sample over three consecutive school years, from fall 1999 through fall 2001, and randomly assigned within schools to either the program or the control group."

I am not sure if this is good methodology. If the control and intervention group are allowed to interact with each other, then they are not independent events. Seems difficult to be able to tease out if the different programs had an effect.

Otto said...

This is a good post - Terrible news to us parents but a good post. I think it is more about the childs environment than anything else.

One of my friends with a oldest daughter the same age (12)as my oldest, she is in public school and mine is home schooled because the schools are terrible for kids not religious reasons. His kid has already started talking about boys and having them over. Mine is more interested in her art classes and going to art shows with her friends than interacting with boys on a sexual level.

Public school mind control is the downfall of our world yet to come.

Anonymous said...

i find that media also plays a big big role for this. the shows aimed at pre-teens and young teens, in my opinion, does encourage the trend that one should have a girlfriend/boyfriend at their age, it is not cool to be otherwise, etc. also music has become a big thing for this age group, and many of the videos i find inappropriate for a person of any age; meanwhile the kids are hooked to them. i find it sad that kids now a days depart their childhood time so early on, and dive right into adult issues.