Sex education programs that are effective:

  1. Focus on reducing one or more sexual behaviors that lead to unintended pregnancy or HIV/STD infection.
  2. Use social learning theories that have been used by other health promotion programs that are succesful.
  3. Give clear messages.
  4. Provide basic, accurate information about the risks of unprotected intercourse and ways to avoid unprotected intercourse.
  5. Include activities that address social pressures on sexual behaviors.
  6. Provide modeling and practice of communication, negotiation, and refusal skills.
  7. Use a variety of teaching methods to involve students and get them to personalize the information.
  8. Incorporate information appropriate to the age, sexual experience, and culture of the students.
  9. Last long enough to complete important activities adequately.
  10. Select teachers or peers who believe in the program and provide training for them.

(Salkind, Neil J. (ed.), Child Development – Macmillan Psychology Reference Series. New York: Macmillan, 2002, p.359)