Sexual Risk Avoidance Grant

Services Provided

The Curriculum:

The curriculum, Making A Difference, was selected from the options available from the federal registry.  Enrichment lessons in areas of understanding puberty, sexuality, STD, HIV, Pregnancy, peer pressure, coercion, assault and violence prevention will be provided by YWCA staff with a focus on abstinence.  A focus of our grant funding is to assist students in developing skills in reducing sexual coercion and assault.  80% of our special education students are at risk for these sexual encounters.  They are also many more times likely to become pregnant as a teen.

Curriculum Accommodations:

The Family and Youth Services Bureau, Health and Human Services, our funder, required selection of curriculum from a list of abstinence-only options.  None were specific to special education needs.  The curriculum that we selected meets some IEP requirements and will have needed accommodations for limited verbal learners, more engaging art and pictures, and activities.  This will be accomplished with special education experts at Kent ISD and local district special education teachers currently implementing sexuality education in their classrooms.

Positive Youth Development Opportunities:

  1. Participation on committees to create the Best Prom Ever for 2017 and 2018
  2. Participation with Peer-to-Peer Mentors
  3. Drug Prevention Activities, including an all-school social norm campaign
  4. Participation Transition Expo and Life Unplugged

Staff Professional Development:

To expand special education teacher knowledge in sexuality education, the following programs will be offered throughout the three years of grant funding, with paid substitute teacher reimbursement:

  1. Special Education Strategies for Cognitively Challenged Students: Nationally Certified Sexuality Educator and Downs Syndrome Specialist, Terri Couwenhoven
  2.  Sexual Minority Youth, trained by Michigan Department of Education Diversity Staff Consultant
  3. Reproductive Health Institute
  4. Speaker and programming selected in final year based on surveys for what is most needed

Parents of Special Education Secondary Students:

  1. Curriculum overview and importance of sexuality education at parent association meetings
  2. Parent specific programming from national speakers
  3. Connections to Positive Youth Development activities for their teens


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Parent/Teacher Information

Sample of our Parent Notification Letter

Upcoming Events

June 12 and  August 8: Special Education Teacher Workshop and Curriculum Accommodation