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UNESCO HIV and Health Education Clearinghouse

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  1. Towards comprehensive sexuality education: a comparative analysis of the policy environment surrounding school-based sexuality education in Ghana, Peru, Kenya and Guatemala

    The successful implementation of comprehensive sexuality education (CSE) programmes in schools depends on the development and implementation of strong policy in support of CSE. This paper offers a comparative analysis of the policy environment governing school-based CSE in four low- and middle-income countries at different stages of programme implementation: Ghana, Peru, Kenya and Guatemala. …

  2. Challenges to implementing national comprehensive sexuality education curricula in low- and middle-income countries: case studies of Ghana, Kenya, Peru and Guatemala

    School-based comprehensive sexuality education (CSE) can help adolescents achieve their full potential and realize their sexual and reproductive health and rights. This is particularly pressing in low- and middle-income countries (LMICs), where high rates of unintended pregnancy and STIs among adolescents can limit countries’ ability to capitalize on the demographic dividend. While many LMICs have developed CSE curricula, their full implementation is often hindered by challenges around program planning and roll-out at the national and local level. …

  3. The effects of school-based condom availability programs (CAPs) on condom acquisition, use and sexual behavior: a systematic review

    We conducted a systematic review to assess the impact of school-based condom availability programs (CAPs) on condom acquisition, use and sexual behavior. We searched PubMed to identify English-language studies evaluating school-based CAPs that reported process (i.e. number of condoms distributed or used) and sexual behavior measures. We identified nine studies that met our inclusion criteria, with the majority conducted in the United States of America. We judged most studies to have medium risk of bias. …

  4. What do young people think about their school-based sex and relationship education? A qualitative synthesis of young people’s views and experiences

    Objectives: Although sex and relationship education (SRE) represents a key strand in policies to safeguard young people and improve their sexual health, it currently lacks statutory status, government guidance is outdated and a third of UK schools has poor-quality SRE. We aimed to investigate whether current provision meets young people's needs. Design: Synthesis of qualitative studies of young people's views of their school-based SRE. Setting: Eligible studies originated from the UK, Ireland, the USA, Australia, New Zealand, Canada, Japan, Iran, Brazil and Sweden. …

  5. HIV prevention in Mexican schools: prospective randomised evaluation of intervention

    Objective: To assess effects on condom use and other sexual behaviour of an HIV prevention programme at school that promotes the use of condoms with and without emergency contraception. […] Intervention: Schools were randomised to one of three arms: an HIV prevention course that promoted condom use, the same course with emergency contraception as back-up, or the existing sex education course. Self administered anonymous questionnaires were completed at baseline, four months, and 16 months. …

  6. School-based sexual health education interventions to prevent STI/HIV in sub-Saharan Africa: a systematic review and meta-analysis

    The authors reviewed evaluations of school-based sexual health education interventions in sub-Saharan Africa to assess effectiveness in reducing sexually transmitted infections and promoting condom use.

  7. The need to prepare future teachers to understand and combat homophobia in schools

    Teacher training programmes that improve teachers' capacity and confidence to address homophobia in South African schools will engender non-homophobic school contexts. Currently, there is a dearth of educational research on future teachers' preparation for homophobic school contexts. …

  8. Sexuality education in rural Lesotho schools: challenges and possibilities

    The aim of this paper is to present and discuss some of the obstacles to effective sexuality education in rural Lesotho schools and offer some suggestions that could facilitate positive change in the current status of sexuality education. The call for education as a ‘vaccine’ against new HIV infections places teachers at the forefront of the fight against the pandemic, and thus it is imperative to understand how they experience teaching about sexuality. …

  9. ‘You need to have some guts to teach’: teacher preparation and characteristics for the teaching of sexuality and HIV/AIDS education in South African schools

    Using in-depth interviews, the authors asked sexuality educators in South Africa about their own professional preparation and what they believed were necessary educator characteristics for teaching Sexuality Education. Their findings show that the teachers taught Sexuality Education without any appropriate qualification or preparation, but because they had a lighter teaching load and had room to take on more teaching hours. Nevertheless, they all mention that ‘not anybody can teach Sexuality Education’. …

  10. School-based interventions for preventing HIV, sexually transmitted infections, and pregnancy in adolescents (Review)

    Background: School-based sexual and reproductive health programmes are widely accepted as an approach to reducing high-risk sexual behaviour among adolescents. Many studies and systematic reviews have concentrated on measuring effects on knowledge or self-reported behaviour rather than biological outcomes, such as pregnancy or prevalence of sexually transmitted infections (STIs). Objectives: To evaluate the effects of school-based sexual and reproductive health programmes on sexually transmitted infections (such as HIV, herpes simplex virus, and syphilis), and pregnancy among adolescents.

  11. Life orientation sexuality education in South Africa: Gendered norms, justice and transformation

    Research on sexual practices among young South Africans has proliferated in light of the national imperatives to challenge the spread of HIV/AIDS, gender-based violence and unwanted early pregnancies. It has been widely acknowledged that, in order to respond to these social problems, we need to understand the enmeshment of gender, class, age and other forms of social inequality, and how these are played out in ‘normal’ heterosexual relationships.

  12. Constructing the ideal Muslim sexual subject: problematics of school-based sex education in Iran

    School-based sex education is an underdeveloped and challenging issue to address in Iran. This paper provides insights into the main challenges in developing and implementing school-based sex education in Iran. Through an investigation of one Iranian boys' school that, in contrast to the majority of Iranian educational institutions, has an established strategy for educating its pupils on sexual matters, it is possible to critically explore the underlying principles and practice of sex education in this institution. …

  13. Scaling up comprehensive sexuality education in Nigeria: from national policy to nationwide application

    Nigeria is one of few countries that reports having translated national policies on school-based comprehensive sexuality education (CSE) into near-nationwide implementation. We analysed data using the World Health Organization-ExpandNet framework, which provides a systematic structure for planning and managing the scaling up of health innovations. We examined how Nigeria's nationwide programme was designed and executed. Since 2002, Nigeria has developed a well thought through strategy to scale up CSE. …

  14. Impact and cost-effectiveness analysis of the national school-based sexuality education programme in Estonia

    Policy-makers making decisions on the implementation of school-based sexuality education (SE) programmes face two important questions: (1) what are the costs of implementing and scaling up SE programmes, and (2) what are the impacts? This paper responds to these questions by retrospectively assessing costs, impact and cost-effectiveness of the national school-based SE programme in Estonia 1997–2009. The three-year curriculum had been taught to 190,000 students at the end of 2009. The cost of reaching one student was USD 32.90 and the total costs were USD 5.6 million. …

  15. School-based sexuality education in Portugal: strengths and weaknesses

    Portugal, like many other countries, faces obstacles regarding schoolbased sexuality education. This paper explores Portuguese schools’ approaches to implementing sexuality education at a local level, and provides a critical analysis of potential strengths and weaknesses. Documents related to sexuality education in a convenience sample of 89 schools were analysed and findings confirm both the results of the few existing Portuguese studies on the subject and commonalities in sexuality education between Portugal and other European countries. …

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