Salt Lake Tribune (02.19.12) - Friday, February 24, 2012
The state Department of Health (DOH) is using funds from the
Affordable Care Act to support comprehensive sex education for
teens outside of schools, at community-based settings like the
Boys & Girls Club.
Some $484,000 in annual federal funding through 2015 will be
used by Utah to try to reduce teen pregnancy and STDs among
at-risk youths through the Personal Responsibility Education
Program. Six community groups from Brigham City to Moab
applied for and will receive the PREP money, which requires
grantees to choose from evidence-based curricula.
Of 28 approved programs, DOH selected four. All "focus quite a
bit on condom use, and not just for preventing teen pregnancy
but for preventing HIV and AIDS as well," said Jennifer
Mayfield, adolescent health coordinator for the department.
"There are condom demonstrations in all of these curricula."
The Boys & Girls' annual $100,000 grant will assist 500 teens
in the Lied Club, Capitol West in Salt Lake City and in
Tooele. The group selected the "All4You!" curriculum, a 14-
week class that includes lessons on STD and pregnancy
prevention and negotiation skills. "[Kids] need to have the
knowledge that's going to best protect them," said Allison
Barclay, vice president of the Boys & Girls Club of Greater
A bill currently being considered in Utah, HB 363, would make
sex education optional in schools.
Mayfield said DOH officials discussed how frank programs may
offend conservative policy makers, but decided to go ahead and
seek the PREP funds. "We wanted to do what we thought was best
for our teens," she said.