Schools have a significant role in imparting effective sex education to adolescents. Research has shown that with effective sex education to young adults in schools, it is possible to push back the age at which adolescents experiment with sex. These programs also have the potential to encourage youngsters to use protection during their first sexual experience.
However, although schools in the cities and suburbs of India are coming up with innovative health and hygiene workshops that deal with issues like health foods and usage of sanitary napkins, the introduction of comprehensive sex education in schools on a regular basis still remains a subject of raging controversy. The existing education system in India is still much divided about conducting such workshops and programs within the school premises.
According to the WHO, sex education for children should be imparted at the age of 12 and above. It is estimated that 34% of the HIV infected persons are in the age group of 12 to 19 years; despite this statistic, it was found that school authorities still nursed a mental block. The results of a survey conducted by Vidyasagar Institute of Mental Health and Neurological Sciences, Delhi, in the year 2003, might be an eye opener to school authorities where children themselves expressed the need for sex education.