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The vast majority of sex education programs—even those considered “comprehensive”—exclude information about LGBTQ+ sex. The reduction in so-called “risk behavior” and the promotion of “positive sexual health outcomes” associated with comprehensive sex ed primarily speak to heterosexual, white, and upper- and middle-class youth. LGBTQ+ inclusive sex ed is largely inaccessible, even in places with “comprehensive” sex ed, and especially to those who are Black, Indigenous, or other people of color. Research from GLSEN shows that nearly 1/4 of middle and high school students had no access to school-based sex-ed. Of the students who did, just 8.2% reported that it was inclusive of LGBTQ+ subjects. LGBTQ+ students often report turning to the internet for relatable information about sexuality. Online information on sexuality, health, and STIs is commonly not age-appropriate nor medically accurate, placing LGBTQ+ individuals at a tremendous disadvantage. In fact, the information gap between LGBTQ+ youth and their peers can create feelings of isolation. As bad, insufficient sex ed is associated with increasing rates of hostility—including verbal and physical harassment and exclusion—in school environments.

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