Abortion and emergency contraception could...

Posted at 10:52 PM, Jan 11, 2016
and last updated 2016-01-11 23:59:39-05

Changes to Omaha Public School’s sex education curriculum that would have eliminated classroom discussions about emergency contraception and abortion could be off the table.

Board members sifted through the proposed Human Growth and Development Content Standards Monday night. In the working session, board members questioned administration changes that eliminated emergency contraception and abortion in the 10th grade curriculum. Administrators removed the topics after a public input process.

Board members said 70 percent of survey respondents favored the putting the issues into the curriculum. Marian Fey, who represents district three, said she’d like to see the topics stay.

“I'd like to open that discuss with my board colleagues. I'd like to see this put back in,” Fey said.

Administrators said they put the issues in the curriculum so students knew both abortion and contraception were options, insisting they did not want to present them as the only options. They wanted students to be able to discuss them with parents and family.

“We should have done this earlier, because you've helped us understand the direction better than I knew,” OPS Superintendent Mark Evans told the Board. “So, it's never a singular thing. And that's what it's difficult. And by the way that's why it's been 30 years since anyone was willing to have the conversation.”

No board members spoke against the two controversial topics. Administrators have not said if they will be added back in before the final vote. The vote is scheduled for the board’s January 20 meeting.

“That's our goal that's the target we're going to try to hit. If we can't do it we'll extend our timeframe,” Assistant Superintendent ReNae Kehrberg.

The Board asked administrators to expand lessons on personal boundaries and social media to younger grades.

Click here for OPS sex education proposal documents.