Special Issue Article

Sexuality Research & Social Policy

, Volume 5, Issue 2, pp 23-44

First online:

Sexuality education in an abstinence-only era: A comparative case study of two U.S. states

  • Nancy KendallAffiliated withDepartment of Educational Policy Studies, University of Wisconsin-Madison Email author 

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This article examines the effects of U.S. federal funding for abstinence-only-until-marriage (AOUM) education on the educational policies and practices of pupils, teachers, districts, and private organizations in 2 states: Florida and Wyoming. It briefly reviews the political environment within which AOUM funding has expanded and employs a social justice framework to examine the intended and unintended effects—physical, social, economic, and gendered—of AOUM funding on schools and students in the study sites. The article concludes with an examination of the school- and district-level possibilities and exigencies for transforming current sexuality education paradigms.

Key words

Florida Wyoming ethnography abstinence-only-until-marriage social justice