Washington State Awarded HIV/STD Prevention Grant
OLYMPIA — September 13, 2013 — Nearly three out of every five Washington State seniors reported ever having sex, according to the 2012 Healthy Youth Survey. Teaching those students – as well as students who haven’t yet had sex – about healthy relationships and preventing HIV and sexually transmitted diseases is crucial to their health.
A five-year grant totaling as much as $1.85 million awarded to the Office of Superintendent of Public Instruction by the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) will provide help with those life-long skills.
“The most effective way to help students learn about healthy relationships, and to help them learn how to reduce the spread of HIV and sexually transmitted diseases is by educating them,” said Randy Dorn, state superintendent of public instruction. “The grant we received from the CDC will help us do just that.”
A total of 19 states and 17 school districts across the country received the competitive grant. In Washington, the grant will help districts build the capacity to deliver exemplary sexual health education that emphasizes HIV and other STD prevention, increase adolescents’ access to sexual health services and create supportive environments for students and staff.
OSPI will be collaborating with several state and national organizations, including the state’s Association of nine regional Educational Service Districts (AESD).
Nationally, the grant – called Promoting Adolescent Health Through School-Based HIV/STD Prevention and School-Based Surveillance – totals $14 million in 2013. According to the CDC, the grant will allow the CDC to work collaboratively with state and national partners to:
- Decrease sexual risk behaviors among adolescents,
- Increase use of condoms and highly effective contraception methods among sexually active adolescents,
- Increase adolescents’ access to key sexual health services and
- Obtain weighted Youth Risk Behavior Survey and School Health Profiles data.
The Office of Superintendent of Public Instruction (OSPI) is the primary agency charged with overseeing K–12 education in Washington state. Led by State School Superintendent Randy Dorn, OSPI works with the state’s 295 school districts and nine educational service districts to administer basic education programs and implement education reform on behalf of more than one million public school students.
OSPI provides equal access to all programs and services without discrimination based on sex, race, creed, religion, color, national origin, age, honorably discharged veteran or military status, sexual orientation, gender expression or identity, the presence of any sensory, mental, or physical disability, or the use of a trained dog guide or service animal by a person with a disability. Questions and complaints of alleged discrimination should be directed to the Equity and Civil Rights Director at (360) 725-6162 or P.O. Box 47200, Olympia, WA 98504-7200.
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