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Kansas House Panel Approves Bill For 'Opt-In' Sex Education

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Kansas public schools would be required to get parents' permission before students could participate in sex education courses under a bill a state House committee has approved.

Education Committee Chairman and Wamego Republican Ron Highland said Wednesday that the so-called "opt-in" sex education bill is designed to give parents more control.

The measure was approved Tuesday and requires written consent from a child's parent or guardian. Most of the state's 286 local school districts have "opt-out" policies in which a child takes sex education unless a parent objects.

Democratic Rep. Ed Trimmer of Winfield said with opt-in policies, parents who aren't engaged inadvertently deny their children needed classes.

The panel had hearings and passed the bill last year, but it stalled in the House and was returned to the committee.

According USD 259 spokesperson Susan Arensman, the Wichita Public School District already has an opt-in policy.

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