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American Public Health Association
133rd Annual Meeting & Exposition
December 10-14, 2005
Philadelphia, PA
APHA 2005
3222.0: Monday, December 12, 2005 - 12:50 PM

Abstract #112013

Comparing parents' support for abstinence education with their support for contraceptive education

Linsey Garlington, BS, Program in Health Science, University of Arkansas, HPER 326A, Health Education Projects Office, Fayetteville, AR 72701, 479-575-5639, meyoung@uark.edu, Tina M. Penhollow, MS, CHES, Department of Health Science, Kinesiology, Recreation, and Dance, University of Arkansas, 309 HPER Building, Fayetteville, AR 72701, and Michael Young, PhD, University of Arkansas, 155 Stadium Drive, Fayetteville, AR 72701.

The purpose of the study was to compare the level of support expressed by parents for abstinence education with their expressed support for contraceptive education. Parents of students attending a single southern school district completed an anonymous survey that included items based on the federal definition of abstinence education, and items dealing with teaching about condoms and other contraceptives. Respondents completed anonymous questionnaires, indicating their level of support for these topics for each of three age groups (9-12, 13-15, and 16-18) and their level of agreement with several statements about sexuality education. Usable questionnaires were obtained from 198 parents. Data were analyzed using appropriate SAS programs. Confirmatory factor analysis indicated the existence of four factors condom/contraceptive education, two abstinence factors (standards/benefits and likely consequences), and a factor dealing with a democratic view of sexuality education. Level of support for contraceptive education was compared to the level of support for two abstinence factors. Results indicated that the majority of parents supported the teaching of all three topics/factors for students in all three age groups. Only for the youngest age group was there was significantly less support (p<.05) for contraceptive education than for the two abstinence factors. Results also indicated that a democratic view of sexuality accounted for a significant amount of the variation in parent support for contraception education (for all three age groups), but not for the two abstinence factors. These results have implications for the development and implementation of public school programs of sexuality and abstinence education.

Learning Objectives:

  • At the conclusion of this session the participant will be able to

    Keywords: School Health, Adolescent Health

    Presenting author's disclosure statement:

    I wish to disclose that I have NO financial interests or other relationship with the manufactures of commercial products, suppliers of commercial services or commercial supporters.

    Support for Sexuality Education

    The 133rd Annual Meeting & Exposition (December 10-14, 2005) of APHA