New Jersey orders schools to teach 8th graders about 'pregnancy options,' including abortion

The information is 'most essential' for 'health and physical literacy,' the state says.

Published: June 10, 2020 4:15pm

Updated: June 10, 2020 6:57pm

The state of New Jersey has ordered that by the time public school students graduate from eighth grade they understanding numerous "pregnancy options" including abortion. 

The state's 2020 "student learning standards" concerning "comprehensive health and physical education" states that all New Jersey public school students "will acquire the knowledge and skills of what is most essential to become individuals who possess health and physical literacy and pursue a life of wellness by developing the habits necessary to live healthy, productive lives that positively impact their families, schools and communities."

"By the end of grade 8," the state orders, students must have "an awareness of the stages of pregnancy and prenatal care," and how those things can "contribute to a healthy pregnancy and the birth of a healthy child."

Specifically, the state directs teachers to "describe pregnancy testing, the signs of pregnancy, and pregnancy options, including parenting, abortion, and adoption."

Planned Parenthood Action Fund of New Jersey spokeswoman Kaitlyn Wojtowicz in a statement last week praised the new guidelines. "The new and improved sex education standards will ensure that young people have the information, resources and skills they need to protect their health and build their future – without shame or judgment," she said. 

Shawn Hyland, the director of advocacy at the Family Policy Alliance of New Jersey, meanwhile, told local media that the standards are a "gross failure of responsibility" on the part of the state. 

"Tragically, schools have become obsessed with graphic sexual lessons and reading assignments that promote unhealthy and risky behaviors," he said. 

The state is known for its progressive attitudes on abortion. In March, state Gov. Phil Murphy banned "elective surgeries" throughout the state, but he excluded abortions from that order. 

The Guttmacher Institute, meanwhile, estimates that New Jersey in 2017 had the fourth-most abortion clinics of any state in the country. 

Unlock unlimited access

  • No Ads Within Stories
  • No Autoplay Videos
  • VIP access to exclusive Just the News newsmaker events hosted by John Solomon and his team.
  • Support the investigative reporting and honest news presentation you've come to enjoy from Just the News.
  • Just the News Spotlight

    Support Just the News