Outline of the state of Colorado
Requires medically-accurate comprehensive sex education

Sexual Health Education General—HS

Sexual Health Education General—HS

State law requires teaching comprehensive sex education, medically-accurate sex education, or otherwise addresses all elements of comprehensive sex education as defined by the Sexuality Information and Education Council of the United States.

Colorado Revised Statutes 22-1-128. Comprehensive human sexuality education - legislative declaration - definitions - guidelines and content Standard.

(6) Human sexuality instruction is not required. However, if a school district, board of cooperative services, charter school, or institute charter school offers human sexuality instruction, the instruction must be comprehensive and meet the comprehensive human sexuality education content requirements. These requirements must:

  • (a) Encourage parental involvement and family communication;

  • (b) Include medically accurate information about methods to prevent unintended pregnancy and sexually transmitted infections, including HIV/AIDS, and the link between human papillomavirus and cancer. Methods taught shall include information about the correct and consistent use of abstinence, contraception, including all FDA approved forms of contraception, condoms, and other barrier methods and must be taught in a cohesive, integrated, objective manner so that youth learn the full scope of preventive methods available to them and are empowered to decide for themselves which preventive methods are best suited for their individual needs, beliefs, and values.

  • (c) Promote the development of healthy relationships by providing human sexuality instruction on:

  • (I) How to communicate consent, recognize communication of consent, recognize withdrawal of consent, and understand age of consent as it relates to section 18-3-402;

  • (II) How to avoid making unwanted verbal, physical, and sexual advances;

  • (III) How to avoid making assumptions about a person's supposed sexual intentions based on that person's appearance or sexual history; and

  • (IV) How to avoid pursuing a sexual encounter with a person or persuading a person to participate in a sexual encounter when that person has not provided consent or has withdrawn consent;

  • (d) Include discussions and information on how to recognize and respond safely and effectively in situations where sexual or physical violence may be occurring or where there may be a risk for these behaviors to occur;

  • (e) Include discussion of how alcohol and drug use impairs responsible and healthy decision-making;

  • (f) Be comprehensive, age-appropriate, culturally sensitive, inclusive of a positive youth development framework, and medically accurate;

  • (g) Provide instruction about the health benefits and potential side effects of using contraceptives and barrier methods to prevent pregnancy, including instruction regarding emergency contraception and the availability of contraceptive methods;

  • (h) For school districts that have established a character education program pursuant to section 22-29-103, promote the guidelines of behavior established in the character education program;

  • (i) Not emphasize sexual abstinence as the primary or sole acceptable preventive method available to students. A school district, board of cooperative services, charter school, or institute charter school shall not engage the instructional services of an organization or individual that is a direct or indirect recipient of money from the federal government pursuant to 42 U.S.C. sec. 710, as amended, because the guidelines of 42 U.S.C. sec. 710 are inconsistent with the provisions of this section.

  • (j) Provide age-appropriate information concerning sections 18-6-401(9) and 19-3-304.5, or any successor laws, referred to generally as "safe haven laws", relating to the safe abandonment of a child to a firefighter at a fire station or to a staff member at a hospital or a community clinic emergency center within the first seventy-two hours of the child's life.


  • (a) Nothing in subsection (6) or (6.5) of this section shall be interpreted to prohibit discussion of health, moral, ethical, or religious values as they pertain to comprehensive human sexuality, healthy relationships, or family formation. Such discussion is encouraged.

  • (b) However, human sexuality instruction must not explicitly or implicitly:

  • (I) Use shame-based or stigmatizing language or instructional tools;

  • (II) Employ gender stereotypes; or

  • (III) Exclude the health needs of intersex individuals or lesbian, gay, bisexual, or transgender individuals.

(11) The provisions of this section shall not apply to students in kindergarten through third grade.

Policy Type

Colorado Revised Statutes 22-25-104. Colorado comprehensive health education program - role of department of education - recommended curriculum guidelines - allocation of funds - rules

(4.5) The department of education shall identify programs that are evidence-based, culturally sensitive, and reflective of positive youth development guidelines for use by school districts in local comprehensive health education programs related to comprehensive human sexuality education.

(6)(a) Any curriculum and materials developed and used in teaching sexuality and human reproduction shall include values and responsibility and shall give primary emphasis to abstinence by school aged children.

Policy Type

School Health and Wellness State and Federal Legislation and Policy

"House Bill 13-1081: Comprehensive Human Sexuality K-12 Education. This law updates the definition of “comprehensive human sexuality education” as evidence-based, comprehensive, medically accurate, and culturally sensitive."

Policy Type