ERIC Number: ED286086
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1987-Mar-12
Reference Count: N/A
Planned Parenthood Harris Poll Findings: Teens' Sexuality Knowledge and Beliefs.
Haignere, Clara S.
Planned Parenthood conducted a national public opinion poll, asking 1,000 12- through 17-year-olds about their knowledge and beliefs on the problem of teenage pregnancy. The results showed that over 50% of the adolescents had sexual intercourse before their 18th birthday. Those teenagers most likely to be sexually active fell into certain at-risk groups with the common denominator being limited life opportunities for further education and career development. Reasons respondents gave for being sexually active included social pressure, followed by curiosity and sexual gratification. However, the most common reason given was that the respondent was "swept away." The majority reported not using contraceptives because they did not know enough about them or even where to get them. Forty percent of the adolescents had no sexuality education in school; only 35 percent had comprehensive sexuality education. Parents have been cited as the primary source of information, yet many respondents reported never having discussed sexuality with their parents. Respondents reported believing that television gave realistic views of sexually trasmitted diseases, pregnancy, the consequences of sex, and family planning. This opinion appeared to change, however, as sexuality education became more comprehensive. Adolescents needing the most education included those doing poorly in school, those in vocational tracks in schools, boys, those from low and middle income families, younger teenagers, and teenagers living in the south. (Author/NB)
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: Planned Parenthood Federation of America, Inc., New York, NY.
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Children's Defense Fund National Conference (Washington, DC, March 11-13, 1987).