Region 8 School Teaches Teens To Postpone Sexual Involvement

December 13, 2004 – Posted at 6:22 p.m. CST

BROSELEY -- The National Center for Health Statistics says the percentage of girls ages 15 to 17 having intercourse declined from 38% in 1995 to 30% by 2002. And it's a trend that hits home.

"We try to stress that it is worth the wait, and that you don't want to have to deal with some of the consequences like pregnancy," said Junior Morgan Terrell.

Terrell and Senior Whitney Sentell are both members of PSI or Postponing Sexual Involvement. They're part of a team of students who teach an abstinence-based program to seventh graders at the Twin Rivers School District.

"They seem to respond to it. We're pretty open about what we say. We're open to any questions. They seem to have a good time and actually get into what we are saying," said Sentell.

"We try to emphasize absence, because no birth control is 100% effective," said Terrell.

The PSI program has been in the Twin Rivers School District for the last eight years, and so far, it's proved to be pretty effective. In fact, school officials say the teen pregnancy rate has dropped more than 75% just over the last year alone. And while kids teaching kids about sex may not be easy, Sentell says it's something that reflects on society.

"It seems like more and more today it does start earlier and earlier. I really do think they are just now starting and they are going into that stage in their life where they're going to be going into something like that," said Sentell.

The Twin Rivers School District also has a separate curriculum for freshman students. The program  is called "Making a Difference" and it's an abstinence-based approach to reduce HIV, STD and teenage pregnancy.