Governor Gary Herbert vetoes controversial sex education bill HB363

Published: Friday, March 16 2012 9:39 p.m. MDT

"We were surprised by the link," she said. "There were some aspects about it that were walking the line."

A bill nearly-identical to HB363 was sponsored by Wright in 2000 and was subsequently vetoed by then-Gov. Mike Leavitt at the urging of the State Board of Education. As part of that veto, a number of rules were set in place regarding sex education, including the requirement for parents to opt-in their students, a requirement that all sex education materials be approved at the district level by a committee of parents and the district school board, and a mechanism for parents to lodge complaints.

Current law also permits school districts to implement a curriculum that is more conservative than what is allowed by law and four districts currently teach an abstinence-only curriculum.

Hales said the only documented complaint that reached the state office in the 12 years since those rules were enacted was that of the Bountiful parent last spring addressing the website links. She also said that while there is no hard data available, it is estimated that between 92 and 95 percent of parents grant permission for their children to attend sex education and maturation courses.

Weber State University announced this week that if signed into law, the bill would require it to discontinue concurrent enrollment courses that currently serve 850 Weber and Davis county students.

Deseret News editorial: Thoughtful veto of sex education bill

PDF: Governor Gary Herberts statement on his veto of sex education bill, HB363

E-mail: benwood@desnews.com

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