Sex ed alternative

Editor, Gettysburg Times,

In her May 15 Letter to the Editor of the Gettysburg Times, Cindy Janczyk cited the American College of Pediatricians (ACP) as supportive of Sexual Risk Avoidance (SRA) programs, but what is the ACP? The ACP, which has only an estimated 500 members, has been identified by The Southern Poverty Law Center as an anti-LGBTQ hate group that supports harmful and pseudo-scientific conversion therapy and opposes adoption by gay and lesbian couples.

In contrast, the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP), whose estimated 67,000 members include the pediatricians and nurse practitioners of both Gettysburg Pediatrics and Hanover Pediatrics, urge support and care of gender diverse children and adolescents, as well as support full adoption and foster care rights of all parents, regardless of sexual orientation. Additionally, the AAP supports comprehensive sex ed programs, not SRA programs like that of Tender Care’s Project WORTH. This is because SRA programs are simply rebranded Abstinence-Only-Until-Marriage programs.

In addition to the AAP, the National Education Association and the American Medical Association “...oppose abstinence-only education and endorse comprehensive sexuality education that includes both abstinence promotion and accurate information about contraception, human sexuality and STIs.”

LGBTQ youth, indeed all youth, deserve education that is reflective of the non-discriminatory policies Conewago Valley, Gettysburg Area, Upper Adams, and Spring Grove school districts purport to uphold. Why then, do these same school districts continue to use Tender Care’s Project WORTH, an SRA program, that reputable groups like the AAP reject, and a hate group like the ACP supports? A better option would be the “Rights. Respect. Responsibility” (3R’s) program, which is a free, comprehensive sex ed program that is supported by the American School Health Association and GLSEN. Lesson plans that include topics on abstinence, anatomy and reproduction, bullying, condoms and birth control, consent, decision-making, families, gender identity/transgender, gender/gender roles, pregnancy, pregnancy options, puberty, relationships, sexual abuse/assault prevention, sexual orientation/LGBTQ, and STD/HIV can be found here:

Information about the 3R’s program will also be available at various events during Gettysburg Pride for parents and other community members to review. Please use this information to lobby your local school board to remove Tender Care’s WORTH program and personnel from our schools and replace it with the 3R’s comprehensive sex ed program, taught by qualified health teachers. Bigotry like that of the ACP has no place in our schools.

Elizabeth Farnham,


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