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Home » Student Success » Resources by Subject Area » Sexual Health Education » Healthy Youth Act

Healthy Youth Act

Contact Information

Sexual Health Education

Laurie Dils
360-725-6364

Until December 2020, schools providing sexual health education in Washington Schools followed the Healthy Youth Act requirements (RCW 28A 300.475) and related WAC 392-410-140.

Senate Bill 5395 updated RCW 28A.300.475, which now requires that all schools provide comprehensive sexual health education by the 2022-23 school year (see New Legislation page). Similar to the Healthy Youth Act, all sexual health education provided in Washington public schools must meet the following criteria:

All instruction and materials used must be:

Instruction must include information about abstinence and other methods of preventing unintended pregnancy and sexually transmitted diseases. Abstinence may not be taught to the exclusion of instruction and materials on FDA approved contraceptives and other disease prevention methods. Information about affirmative consent and bystander training must be included. A full list of required instruction can be found on the New Legislation page.

Instruction for students in kindergarten through grade three must be instruction in social emotional learning (SEL) that is consistent with OSPI’s SEL Standards and Benchmarks.

Another law (RCW 28A.230.020, Common School Curriculum) requires that "all teachers shall stress the importance of...methods to prevent exposure to and transmission of sexually transmitted diseases..." No additional specificity is included in this statute, although K-12 Health Education Standards provide examples of age-appropriate grade-level learning outcomes.

For more information and tools for implementing WA State requirements related to HIV and Sexual Health Education, please see our Resources page.