State Sex Education Policies and Requirements at a Glance
- Alaska schools are not required to teach sex education.
- Alaska has no standard regarding abstinence instruction in sex education.
- Curriculum is not required to include instruction on sexual orientation or gender identity. However, the Content and Performance Standards for Alaska Students suggests that students should be able to comprehend major developments related to class, ethnicity, race, and gender.
- Curriculum is not required to include instruction on consent.
- Sex education curriculum must be available for review by parents or guardians and they are allowed to object to and remove their children from any activity, class, or program. Parents or guardians may also submit a written request to remove their children from instruction on teen dating violence and abuse. This is referred to as an “opt-out” policy.
- Alaska has no standard regarding medically accurate sex education instruction.
Alaska does not have a statute that requires sexuality or STI education. However, AS 14.30.360 states that “each district in the state public school system shall be encouraged to initiate and conduct a program in health education for kindergarten through grade 12” and “should include instruction in physical health and personal safety including … the identification and prevention of child abuse, … sexual abuse, and domestic violence, and appropriate use of health services.” Alaska state law does not specify any parental permission for students to participate in sex education or education of HIV/AIDS.
Effective on October 26, 2016, AS 14.30.361 states that “a person may only teach a class or program in sex education, human reproduction education, or human sexuality education if the person possesses a valid teacher certificate … and is employed under contract with the school or is supervised [by such person].” Additionally, “before curriculum, literature, or materials related to sex education, human reproduction education, or human sexuality education may be used in a class or program or distributed in a school, the curriculum, literature, or material must be approved by the school board and [be] available for parents to review.”
AS.14.30.355 requires each school district to establish a training program for employees and students, and provide parent notices related to sexual abuse and sexual assault awareness and prevention for students enrolled in grades K-12. Similarly, AS. 14.30.356 requires each school district to develop and approve a program relating to teen dating violence and abuse awareness and prevention for grades 7-12. This program must:
- Include training for employees and students;
- Provide parent notices, and
- Be reviewed by a qualified individual or committee for consistency with generally accepted standards for a teen dating violence and abuse awareness and prevention program.
- The training, notices, and instruction adopted must include:
- Age appropriate information;
- The warning signs of dating violence and abusive behavior;
- Characteristics of healthy relationships;
- Measures to prevent and stop dating violence and abuse;
- Community resources available to victims of dating violence and abuse; and
- A procedure allowing a student to be excused from participating in training at the written request of a parent or guardian. This is referred to as an “opt-out” policy.
State Profiles provided by SIECUS: Sex Ed for Social Change. For more information regarding your state’s sex ed policy, visit https://siecus.org/state_profile/alaska-state-profile/