IQ: Educating for life 

Avoiding alcohol, getting plenty of sleep, putting down cell phones while driving — they're all good ideas largely ignored by young people. Is delaying sex another such idea? And if so, should sex education include instruction about contraception and sexually transmitted diseases?

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David Fein

Software businessman

Is sex education best left to parents? The moral aspects of sexuality should be in the parents' hands, but the medical, scientific and some of the social issues surrounding it should be covered in school.

Why teach it in school? Every student should have a factual, science-based understanding of reproduction, contraception and sexually transmitted diseases. That knowledge shouldn't be left to chance.

Were you abstinent until marriage? No.

Estimate the percentage of sexually active high school seniors. Around 70 percent.

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Audrey Burns

College student

Is sex education best the province of parents or of schools? It should be taught by both, but parents can't be relied on to do it. We'd have fewer STDs and pregnancies if all young people were well-educated in this area, too.

Should sex ed in schools be abstinence-based? Abstinence-only programs don't reduce sexual behavior. If anything, pregnancy rates go up because students aren't taught ways to protect themselves. Students should learn, though, that abstinence is an option, and that it's the only foolproof way of avoiding STDs and pregnancy.

What percentage of high school seniors engage in sex? Based on what I saw in high school and in a Human Sexual Behavior class I'm taking now, I'd say 80 percent have sex by the time they graduate.

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Eve Froebig
Springs Ranch

Retired multimedia specialist

Should sex education be taught from an abstinence-based approach? I think so, yes, but I'd prefer that it not be taught at all. Kids are bombarded with sex from every direction as it is.

Estimate the percentage of high school seniors who've had sex. Somewhere around 70 percent.

Were you abstinent until marriage? No. And I regret that.

Is there a good argument for teaching sex education in school? A lot of parents drop the ball and fail to teach it at home. Maybe teaching it in school would be OK if they used a broad-based curriculum that includes both the science and the morality parts.

Should sex ed include instruction in contraception? Teach abstinence, but also teach about contraception so kids know about both.

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