Kentucky State Profile Fiscal Year 2008
The Cabinet for Health and Family Services and community-based organizations in Kentucky received $3,566,720 in federal funds for abstinence-only-until-marriage programs in Fiscal Year 2008.
Sexuality Education Law and Policy | Recent Legislation | Events of Note | Youth Statistical Information of Note | Title V Abstinence-Only-Until-Marriage Funding | Community-Based Abstinence Education (CBAE) and Adolescent Family Life Act (AFLA) Grantees | Federal and State Funding for Abstinence-Only-Until-Marriage Programs | Adolescent Health Contact | Organizations that Support Comprehensive Sexuality Education | Organizations that Oppose Comprehensive Sexuality Education | Local Newspapers | References
All Kentucky schools follow the department of education’s Program of Studies, required instruction for students in grades six through 12. Through personal and physical health education, students learn “how decision-making relates to responsible sexual behavior (e.g., abstinence, preventing pregnancy, preventing HIV/STDs), impacts physical, mental and social well being of an individual.” Students also learn about the basic reproductive system and functions. No specific curriculum is required. However, state funds are available for local health departments to help young people postpone sexual involvement.
Kentucky does not require parental permission for students to participate in sexuality or HIV/AIDS education nor does it say whether parents or guardians may remove their children from such classes.
See Kentucky Department of Education’s Program of Studies.
SIECUS is not aware of any proposed legislationregarding sexuality education in Kentucky.
Kentucky’s Youth: Statistical Information of Note
· In 2007, 52% of female high school students and 49% of male high school students in Kentucky reported ever having had sexual intercourse compared to 46% of female high school students and 50% of male high school students nationwide.
· In 2007, 6% of female high school students and 10% of male high school students in Kentucky reported having had sexual intercourse before age 13 compared to 4% of female high school students and 10% of male high school students nationwide.
· In 2007, 14% of female high school students and 15% of male high school students in Kentucky reported having had four or more lifetime sexual partners compared to 12% of female high school students and 18% of male high school students nationwide.
· In 2007, 40% of female high school students and 33% of male high school students in Kentucky reported being currently sexually active (defined as having had sexual intercourse in the three months prior to the survey) compared to 36% of female high school students and 34% of male high school students nationwide.
· In 2007, among those high school students who reported being currently sexually active, 53% of females and 68% of males in Kentucky reported having used condoms the last time they had sexual intercourse compared to 55% of females and 69% of males nationwide.
· In 2007, among those high school students who reported being currently sexually active, 25% of females and 15% of males in Kentucky reported having used birth control pills the last time they had sexual intercourse compared to 19% of females and 13% of males nationwide.
· In 2007, among those high school students who reported being currently sexually active, 17% of females and 21% of males in Kentucky reported having used alcohol or drugs the last time they had sexual intercourse compared to 18% of females and 28% of males nationwide.
· In 2007, 87% of high school students in Kentucky reported having been taught about AIDS/HIV in school compared to 90% of high school students nationwide.
· Kentucky received $817,297 in federal Title V funding in Fiscal Year 2008.
· The Title V abstinence-only-until marriage grant requires states to provide three state-raised dollars or the equivalent in services for every four federal dollars received. The state match may be provided in part or in full by local groups.
· In Kentucky, sub-grantees are required to make the match.
· The Kentucky Cabinet for Health and Family Services manages the Title V abstinence-only-until-marriage funding and distributes the money to 16 local health departments.
SIECUS has compiled some examples of the use of federal Title V abstinence-only-until-marriage funding in Kentucky:
Barren River District, $54,065 (2008)
The Barren River District Health Department serves students throughout all eight counties in the district. Its abstinence-only-until-marriage program uses A.C. Green’s Game Plan and Navigator, curricula developed by Project Reality, one of the original leaders in the abstinence-only-until-marriage industry.
SIECUS reviewed Game Plan and found that in order to convince high school students to remain abstinent until marriage, the curriculumrelies on messages of fear and shame, inaccurate and misleading information, and biased views of marriage, sexual orientation, and family structure. In addition, Game Plan fails to provide important information on sexual health including how students can seek testing and treatment if they suspect they may have an STD. Finally, the format and underlying biases of the curriculum do not allow for cultural, community, and individual values, and discourage critical thinking and discussions of alternate points of view in the classroom. For example, Game Plan compares sex to fire and says: “In a fireplace, fire is beautiful and gives warmth to a home. Outside of the fireplace, it can cause serious harm.” It continues, “What about sex? In a marriage relationship, sex can be beautiful. Outside of marriage, it can cause serious harm.”
SIECUS also reviewed the Navigator curriculum and found that it relies on messages of fear and shame, inaccurate and misleading information, and biased views of marriage, sexual orientation, and pregnancy options. Navigator fails to provide important information on sexual health and the format and underlying biases of the curriculum dictate specific values and discourage critical thinking. For example, the authors explain “Navigator does not promote the use of contraceptives for teens. No contraceptive device is guaranteed to prevent pregnancy. Besides, students who do not exercise self-control to remain abstinent are not likely to exercise self-control in the use of a contraceptive device.”
Christian County Health Department, $56,406 (2008)
The Christian County Health Department contracts with Alpha Alternative Pregnancy Care Center to provide abstinence-only-until-marriage programs to local schools. Alpha Alternative (AA) is an “inter-denominational Christian ministry” and crisis pregnancy center. Crisis pregnancy centers typically advertise as providing medical services and then use anti-abortion propaganda, misinformation, and fear and shame tactics to dissuade women facing unintended pregnancy from exercising their right to choose.
Alpha Alternative provides abstinence-only-until-marriage programming, called “Save Sex,” to public and private schools and church youth groups. The program teaches “the truths about ‘safe sex’” and “the consequences of premarital sex,” among other topics. The AA website states that the program reached more than 3,000 youth in one year. The organization tailors its program based on settings to provide a “strictly educational perspective in a school setting” or “a biblical viewpoint.” 
Alpha Alternative uses the Choosing the Best curricula for its abstinence-only-until-marriage programs. The Choosing the Best series is one of the more popular abstinence-only-until-marriage programs in the country. The series is comprised of a number of curricula for students from sixth grade through high school: Choosing the Best WAY, Choosing the Best PATH, Choosing the Best LIFE, Choosing the Best JOURNEY, and Choosing the Best SOULMATE. The series has been recently revised and the information about STDs is now medically accurate. However, Choosing the Best curricula continue to promote heterosexual marriage, rely on messages of fear and shame, and include biases about gender, sexual orientation, and pregnancy options. For example, Choosing the Best PATH asks students to brainstorm the “emotional consequences” of premarital sex. Suggested answers include “guilt, feeling scared, ruined relationships, broken emotional bonds.”
· There are two CBAE grantees in Kentucky: New Hope Center, Inc. and Women for Life, Inc.
· There are no AFLA grantees in Kentucky.
New Hope Center, Inc., $799,500 (CBAE 2005–2008) and $599,988 (CBAE 2008–2013)
The New Hope Center operates two crisis pregnancy centers in Kentucky and provides abstinence-only-until-marriage programs to middle school and high school students in up to 52 schools each year. The program uses Choosing the Best curricula.
New Hope also produces a website for teens, Wait for Me (www.w84me.org), which promotes abstinence until marriage. The website includes messages of fear and shame. One section, called, “Abstinence: the difference between…,” compares the benefits of abstinence to the negative consequences of premarital sex. For example, it states that abstinence is the difference between “testing positive for pregnancy” and “receiving positive test results in school,” “learning about disease” and “living with [a sexually transmitted] disease,” or “having a break” (such as spring break) and “having a breakdown.”
Women for Life, Inc., $799,935 (CBAE 2005–2008) and $550,000 (CBAE 2008–2013)
Women for Life is a faith-based organization that “exists to help women and girls in unexpected pregnancy situations by sharing Christ’s grace and unconditional love.” The organization has national affiliates that include Baptists for Life, Care Net, the National Institute of Family and Life Advocates (NIFLA), and Focus on the Family’s Option Ultrasound Program. Women for Life operates the Assurance Care for Women and Girls crisis pregnancy center (formerly named the AA Pregnancy Help Center).
The center’s website does not include information about its abstinence-only-until-marriage program. Instead, it is devoted to providing highly biased information on abortion procedures. The organization portrays abortion as a complicated medical procedure with serious health risks. Its website offers meticulous medical information about different types of abortion procedures that seems intended to overwhelm women and dissuade them from considering abortion as a viable option. A video commercial on the website’s homepage presents a series of questions to women who are considering an abortion: “So you think you’re pregnant and you want an abortion? Okay then, what kind? Methotrexate? Misoprostol (RU486)? Morning After Pill? Suction Aspiration? Dilation and Curettage? Dilation and Extraction? Saline Induction 2nd Trimester? Partial Birth?” These questions scroll across the screen in animated text. The video then insists that women should know all of the available information and options open to them; but it only presents adoption and parenting as viable options while stating, “Feel empowered to make the RIGHT choice.”
Adolescent Health Contact
Cabinet for Health & Family Services
275 E. Main Street
Frankfurt, KY 40601
Phone: (502) 564-2154, ext. 3743
Newspapers in Kentucky
 This refers to the federal government’s fiscal year, which begins on October 1 and ends on September 30. The fiscal year is designated by the calendar year in which it ends; for example, Fiscal Year 2008 began on October 1, 2007 and ended on September 30, 2008.
 Unless otherwise cited, all statistical information comes from: Danice K. Eaton, et. al., “Youth Risk Behavior Surveillance—United States, 2007,” Surveillance Summaries, Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report 57.SS-4 (6 June 2008), accessed 4 June 2008, <http://www.cdc.gov/HealthyYouth/yrbs/index.htm>.
 A.C. Green’s Game Plan (Golf, IL: Project Reality, 2007). For more information, see SIECUS’ review of A.C. Green’s Game Plan at <http://www.communityactionkit.org/curricula_reviews.html>.
 Scott Phelps and Libby Gray, Navigator: Finding Your Way to A Healthy and Successful Future (Golf, IL: Project Reality, 2003). For more information, see SIECUS’ review of Navigator at <http://www.communityactionkit.org/curricula_reviews.html>.
 Personal conversation between Maria Locklear and Morgan Marshall, 16 October 2008.
 Bruce Cook, Choosing the Best (Marietta, GA: Choosing the Best, Inc., 2001-2007).
 Personal conversation between Karen Andrea and Morgan Marshall, 16 October 2008.
 SIECUS has identified this person as a state-based contact for information on adolescent health and if applicable, abstinence-only-until-marriage programs.
 This section is a list of major newspapers in your state with contact information for their newsrooms. This list is by no means exhaustive and does not contain the local level newspapers which are integral to getting your message out to your community. SIECUS strongly urges you to follow stories about the issues that concern you on the national, state, and local level by using an internet news alert service such as Google alerts, becoming an avid reader of your local papers, and establishing relationships with reporters who cover your issues. For more information on how to achieve your media goals visit the SIECUS Community Action Kit.