- New York state law does not mandate the teaching of sexuality education, though schools are required to provide HIV/AIDS instruction. These classes are not required to be comprehensive.
- All sex ed curricula must stress abstinence.
- Sex ed curricula are not required to include instruction on sexual orientation or gender identity, though New York’s Guidance Document for Achieving the New York State Standards in Health Education includes instruction on sexual orientation and limited instruction on gender identity.
- Sex ed curricula are not required to include instruction on consent.
- Parents or guardians may exempt their children from HIV/AIDS instruction as long as the school is given assurance that “the pupil will receive such instruction at home.” This is referred to as an “opt-out” policy.
- New York state provides A Guidance Document for Achieving the New York State Standards in Health Education, which is intended as a guide for developing health curricula. Topic areas mentioned include sexual risk, family life, and sexual health, as well as the prevention of HIV/AIDS, sexually transmitted diseases (STDs), and pregnancy.
Some Sex Ed Advocates Within the State
For more detailed information on how various districts in the state have been implementing these standards — and for recent legislation — you can read SIECUS’s New York profile.