No evidence exists that abstinence-only sex education helps reduce teenage pregnancy or improve sexual health, and there is no evidence to suggest that teaching about contraception results in increased sexual activity in students, says a report by Ofsted, an education watchdog for the United Kingdom.
The Manchester-based organization found that abstinence-only programs that withheld information about contraceptives placed students at a higher risk for pregnancy and sexually transmitted infections. The most effective sex education programs encouraged students to communicate their opinions clearly, make well-informed choices, and act responsibly, according to the study.
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