State law addresses at least one component of a comprehensive sex education curriculum, appropriate to grade level.
South Carolina Code of Laws 59-32-10. Definitions.
(2) “Reproductive health education” means instruction in human physiology, conception, prenatal care and development, childbirth, and postnatal care, but does not include instruction concerning sexual practices outside marriage or practices unrelated to reproduction except within the context of the risk of disease. Abstinence and the risks associated with sexual activity outside of marriage must be strongly emphasized.
(3) “Family life education” means instruction intended to:
- (a) develop an understanding of the physical, mental, emotional, social, economic, and psychological aspects of close personal relationships and an understanding of the physiological, psychological, and cultural foundations of human development;
- (b) provide instruction that will support the development of responsible personal values and behavior and aid in establishing a strong family life for themselves in the future and emphasize the responsibilities of marriage.
- (c) provide instruction as to the laws of this State relating to the sexual conduct of minors, including criminal sexual conduct.
(4) "Pregnancy prevention education" means instruction intended to:
- (a) stress the importance of abstaining from sexual activity until marriage;
- (b) help students develop skills to enable them to resist peer pressure and abstain from sexual activity;
- (c) explain methods of contraception and the risks and benefits of each method. Abortion must not be included as a method of birth control. Instruction explaining the methods of contraception must not be included in any education program for grades kindergarten through fifth. Contraceptive information must be given in the context of future family planning.
South Carolina Code of Laws 59-32-20. Selection or adoption of instruction units by state board required.
(A) Before August 1, 1988, the board, through the department, shall select or develop an instructional unitwith separate components addressing the subjects of reproductive health education, family life education, pregnancy preventioneducation, and sexually transmitted diseases and make the instructional unit available to local school districts. The board,through the department, also shall make available information about other programs developed by other states upon requestof a local school district.
South Carolina Code of Laws 59-32-30. Local school boards to implement comprehensive health education program; guidelines and restrictions.
Beginning with the 1988-1989 school year, for grades six through eight, instruction in comprehensive health must include the following subjects: community health, consumer health, environmental health, growth and development, nutritional health, personal health, prevention and control of diseases and disorders, safety and accident prevention, substance use and abuse, dental health, mental and emotional health, and reproductive health education. Sexually transmitted diseases are to be included as a part of instruction. At the discretion of the local board, instruction in family life education or pregnancy prevention education or both may be included, but instruction in these subjects may not include an explanation of the methods of contraception before the sixth grade. Beginning with the 2016-2017 school year, for grades six through eight, instruction in comprehensive health education also must include the subject of domestic violence.
South Carolina Standard for Health and Safety Education
Standard 1. Grade 6. Reproductive health instruction is permitted before grade six at the option of local school boards (§59-32-30(A)(1)).
Family life and pregnancy-prevention instruction is permitted in grades six, seven, and eight at the option of local school boards; sexually transmitted infections and diseases (STIs/STDs)-prevention and reproductive health instruction is required in these three grades (§59-32-30(A)(2)). A locally-appointed thirteen-member Comprehensive Health Education Advisory Committee reviews and approves local materials used for instruction in reproductive health, family life, and STD/STI and pregnancy prevention.
G-6.1.3 Identify the structures and functions of the male and female reproductive systems.
G-6.1.5 Describe the scientific process of fertilization.
G-6.1.6 Describe the signs and symptoms of pregnancy.
G-6.1.7 Identify reproductive problems found in males and females.
G-6.1.8 Define the terms sexually transmitted infections and diseases (STIs/STDs) and human immuno