Health dept. offers sex-ed class

By Patricia Ann Speelman -

SIDNEY — Children 9-12 and their parents can register for Sidney-Shelby County Health Department Parent-Child Sexuality Education classes through Oct. 14.

The course is scheduled to meet in the department offices, 201 N. Poplar St., for four Tuesdays, Oct. 18-Nov. 8, from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. The fee is $50 for each parent/child team. Additional children with one parent can attend for $25 each. Registration can be completed at the department office or by mail with a registration form. The forms have been distributed through the local schools.

According to the department’s director of nursing, Margie Eilerman, the classes have been offered for several decades and are always popular.

“We make them fun,” she said. “There are snacks and games. It’s not just a lecture.”

Usually, girls attend with their mothers and boys with their fathers, but not always, she said. Sometimes, aunts, uncles, grandparents or other adults accompany the youngsters.

Girls are in one class; boys, in another. Participation is limited to 20 teams in each class. Registered nurses Kathy Cavinder and Linda Daniel lead the program.

The course includes discussions about reproductive anatomy and physiology, personal health and hygiene, body changes, self esteem and body image, reproduction, pregnancy and childbirth and planning for the future.

The program has gained national recognition as an effective method of increasing communication between parents and children regarding sexuality and making parents and children more comfortable in disucssing sexual issues with each other, according to a health department flier. The course provides an opportunity for parents and children to share values, feelings and beliefs, which can help foster a good parent-child relationship, it says.

For information, call 498-7249.

By Patricia Ann Speelman

Reach the writer at 937-538-4824.

Reach the writer at 937-538-4824.