Big Decisions · Dripping Springs ISD · General

Dripping Springs ISD – Big Decisions and Counseling Programs

Dripping Springs provided the following documents as attachments as response to the Open Records Request below.

 

From: sheila.lamb@dsisdtx.us <sheila.lamb@dsisdtx.us> on behalf of Records Request – DSISD <recordsrequest@dsisdtx.us>
Sent: Wednesday, May 10, 2017 2:02 PM
To: Deborah Simmons
Subject: Re: 4/28/2017 – Dripping Springs ISD Open Records Request

Please see attached documents in response to your open records request.

Sheila Lamb

Executive Assistant to the Superintendent

Dripping Springs ISD

sheila.lamb@dsisdtx.us
(512)858-3002

On Fri, Apr 28, 2017 at 11:35 AM, Deborah Simmons wrote:

Dear Officer for Public Records,

This request is made under the Texas Public Information Act, Chapter 552, Texas Government Code, which guarantees the public’s access to information in the custody of governmental agencies.

I respectfully request the following information:

Human Sexuality Instruction.  The November 15, 2016 SHAC Minutes state: “DSISD nurses, counselors, and the Dripping Springs Middle School 7th Grade Science teachers will also be asked to review the updated curriculum and provide feedback to the SHAC.”  Please provide the emails and feedback provided to the SHAC.

Counseling/Guidance Programs.  Please provide summary level of the content of each counseling and guidance program used in the Drippings Springs school district including but not limited to Welcoming Schools, Social Emotional Learning, Leader in Me, Trevor Romain, anti-bullying programs, and character education.  Please include schools and grades implementing each program and scope and sequence.

The Freedom of Information Act provides that if portions of a document are exempt, the remainder must be segregated and released. Therefore, I would appreciate your sending me all nonexempt portions of those records I have requested.

If you decide to withhold or delete any information, please let me know of your decision by referencing specific exemptions under the Act.  Under provisions of the Public Information Act, I reserve the right to appeal should you determine to withhold any information sought in my request.

Thank you for your cooperation. I look forward to receiving your reply within 10 business days, as provided by law.

 

Dripping Springs ISD

Dripping Springs – Response

Here is an email exchange regarding the Dripping Springs Human Sexuality Instruction –

Sent: Wednesday, February 8, 2017 10:00 AM
Subject: Re: 10/25/2016 – Dripping Springs ISD Open Records Request

The curriculum (Big Decisions) is used as written.  Teachers may adjust as appropriate to meet the needs of their students.  We don’t see a need to clarify the handbook on this.

Human Sexuality is taught at grades 5 and 7.

On Wed, Feb 8, 2017 at 7:56 AM,

Hello,

Thank you so much for the responses.

The handbook says “The curriculum is modified by District staff for students in Grades 7 and 8 to ensure the students are receiving age appropriate information specific to the needs of our middle school students. ”

1) However, I asked for clarification on who modifies the curriculum: the District staff or the SHAC; and the answer was ‘no’.  Who modifies the curriculum and is this another opportunity to update the handbook?

2) Is Human Sexuality only taught in the 7th grade?

Thank you to Dripping Springs for providing good details in the District handbook.  I have reviewed the SHAC minutes and documentation.  Overall, it looks like you have a good and functional SHAC.  It is refreshing to see dates and minutes for parents review and District transparency.

I appreciate the clarification and responses.


Sent: Wednesday, February 8, 2017 7:46 AM
Subject: Fwd: 10/25/2016 – Dripping Springs ISD Open Records Request

See answers below in red.  Let me know if you have any additional questions.

Sheila Lamb

Executive Assistant to the Superintendent

Dripping Springs ISD

sheila.lamb@dsisdtx.us
(512)858-3002

———- Forwarded message ———-
Date: Mon, Feb 6, 2017 at 11:51 PM
Subject: Re: 10/25/2016 – Dripping Springs ISD Open Records Request
To: Records Request – DSISD <recordsrequest@dsisdtx.us>

Hello,

Thank you for the response below.  After reading the Handbook, are there additional documents for 8th grade and High School?  No  Where is there information regarding Austin LifeGuard? We no longer use Austin LifeGuard – it will be removed from the Handbook during the next revision.

Is the curriculum modified by District staff or by the SHAC?  No

For schedules, I was expecting calendar dates.  When during the school year is this being taught?  Tentative dates are May 15-19 and 22-26
Handbook, p11 –

“The Dripping Springs ISD Board of Trustees approved the Big Decisions® program to be used in the middle school and high school health classes. The Big Decisions® program is an abstinence-plus program designed for students in Grades 7-12 that provides medically accurate and up-to-date information on STDs, teen pregnancy, and the laws concerning teens and sex. Role playing is used to help students learn about peer pressure, goal setting and setting limits. The curriculum is modified by District staff for students in Grades 7 and 8 to ensure the students are receiving age appropriate information specific to the needs of our middle school students.

The modified curriculum will be posted on the middle school website for review prior to beginning of the human sexuality instruction unit in health classes each semester. More information about Big Decisions® is available at http://www.bigdecisions.org.  In addition, the Austin LifeGuard Character and Sexuality Education assembly program may be used as an introduction to the sexual health unit. The abstinence-based program is designed to empower teens in the Austin area with accurate information and practical tools to help them make healthy decisions, build strong relationships, and fully experience the benefits of saving sex for marriage. More information about Austin LifeGuard is available at http://www.austinlifeguard.com.”


Sent: Friday, November 4, 2016 11:38 AM
Subject: Re: 10/25/2016 – Dripping Springs ISD Open Records Request

Here is the information in response to your open records request.  The information below covers the 2014-15, 2015-16 and 2016-17 school years unless otherwise noted.

District Policy  – EFAA Legal and EHAA Legal.  Because these are legal policies, the BOT does not vote on their adoption.
Schedules – Two documents attached:  “DSMS Big Decisions” and “DSMS Sex Education Curriculum”
Instructors –
  • Dripping Springs Middle School:  7th grade science teachers (Jay Houser, Edie Knight, Megan Frey, and Karen Cole) and instructional facilitator (Wendy Middleton)
  • Walnut Springs Elementary:  nurse (Charlene Cox) and grade 5 teachers (Gay Klassen, Mark Hamilton, Robin Acker, Melanie Dykhoff, Denise Thomas, Debbi Cox)
  • Rooster Springs Elementary:  nurse (LaDonna Skrobarczyk) and grade 5 teachers
    • 2014-15:  Dunn, Amrine, Reincke, Dreher, Smith, Haney
    • 2015-16:  Dun, Wright, Reincke, Dreher, Haney, McNett
    • 2016-17:  Dunn, Wright Reincke Dreher, Meyette, Reeves
  • Dripping Springs Elementary:  nurse (Nancy Marfin) and grade 5 teachers
    • 2014-15:  Michael Kryszak, Susan Horton, Theresa Hicks, Amanda Galassini, Ashley Horton, Meredith Kollman, Jan McBride
    • 2015-16: Jessica Stackhouse, Sharlyn Bammel, Susan Horton, Michael Kryszak, Amanda Galassini, Victoria Kelley, Theresa Hicks
    • 2016-17:  Jessica Stackhouse, Michael Kryszak, Theresa Hicks, Susan Horton, Sharlyn Bammel, Victoria Kelley
Parental Notification – I’ve attached notifications from the middle school and each of the elementary schools in addition to the Student Handbook.
Demonstrations – none
Pregnant Students – We have no policy regarding this.
Let me know if you have any additional questions.
Sheila Lamb

Executive Assistant to the Superintendent

Dripping Springs ISD

sheila.lamb@dsisdtx.us
(512)858-3002

On Tue, Oct 25, 2016 at 8:35 AM,

Dear Officer for Public Records,

This request is made under the Texas Public Information Act, Chapter 552, Texas Government Code, which guarantees the public’s access to information in the custody of governmental agencies.

I respectfully request the following information for Grades K-12 for School Years 2014-2015, 2015-2016, and 2016-2017:

District Policy.  Please provide all district policies on human sexuality education, puberty education, human growth and development, family life education, and maturation, including the adoption date and whether it was adopted by the school board or district administration without an official board vote.

Schedules.  Please provide copies of course schedules, instructors, listings, or other documents that reflect what courses required or elective are offered in your district schools that contain information involving any human sexuality instruction.

Instructors. Please provide a list of all employees and outside speakers of human sexuality including names, organizations or affiliations.  Please provide a list of all employees that have been trained to teach human sexuality instruction.

Parental Notification.  Please provide copies of notification to parents about human sexuality instruction including but not limited to parent permission, opt-in, or opt-out forms used for human sexuality instruction, puberty education, human growth and development, family life education, and maturation.

Demonstrations. Please provide a list of items used for sexual purposes that are allowed to be demonstrated or distributed in your district, whether in class or by schools counselors or nurses, including condoms.

Organizations.  Please provide a list of any organizations or other entities or resources provided to students for referrals regarding human sexuality related issues, including by school counselors.

Pregnant Students.  Please provide a copy of your policy regarding notification of parent(s) when a student says she is pregnant or thinks she is pregnant.

The Freedom of Information Act provides that if portions of a document are exempt, the remainder must be segregated and released. Therefore, I would appreciate your sending me all nonexempt portions of those records I have requested.

If you decide to withhold or delete any information, please let me know of your decision by referencing specific exemptions under the Act.  Under provisions of the Public Information Act, I reserve the right to appeal should you determine to withhold any information sought in my request.

Thank you for your cooperation. I look forward to receiving your reply within 10 business days, as provided by law.

 

Big Decisions · Dripping Springs ISD

Dripping Springs ISD 2016-2017 Human Sexuality Instruction

Excerpt from the Dripping Springs ISD 2016-2017 Handbook:

“Human Sexuality Notice and Information

As a part of the district’s curriculum, students receive instruction related to human sexuality as required by State Law. The law requires that any instruction related to human sexuality, sexually transmitted diseases, or human immunodeficiency virus or acquired immune deficiency syndrome must:

  • present abstinence from sexual activity as the preferred choice of behavior in relationship to all sexual activity for
    unmarried persons of school age;
  • devote more attention to abstinence from sexual activity than to any other behavior;
    emphasize that abstinence is the only method that is 100 percent effective in preventing pregnancy, sexually transmitted diseases, and the emotional trauma associated with adolescent sexual activity;
  • direct adolescents to a standard of behavior in which abstinence from sexual activity before marriage is the most effective way to prevent pregnancy and sexually transmitted diseases; and
  • if included in the curriculum, teach contraception and condom use in terms of human use reality rates instead of theoretical laboratory rates.

The School Health Advisory Council (SHAC) is charged with the task of recommending to the Board of Trustees the appropriate grade levels, methods of human sexuality instruction, and the selection of course materials for such instruction. The SHAC is composed primarily of parents selected by the Board of Trustees and is chaired by one of the parent representatives on the
Council. Other members include community members, campus staff, and district staff. Information about the SHAC is available on the District website at Dripping Springs ISD – School Health Advisory Council (www.dsisd.txed.net/index.aspx?NID=372).

Senate Bill 283 requires districts to provide written notice of their intent to provide human sexuality instruction to students.

Senate Bill 283 specifies:
Before each school year, a school district shall provide written notice to a parent of each student enrolled in the district of the Board of Trustees’ decision regarding whether the district will provide human sexuality instruction to district students. If instruction will be provided, the notice must include:

  1. a summary of the basic content of the district’s human sexuality instruction to be provided to the student, including a statement informing the parent of the instructional
    requirements under state law;
  2. a statement of the parent’s right to:
      1. a. review curriculum materials as provided by Subsection (j); and
      b. remove the student from any part of the district’s human sexuality instruction without subjecting the student to any disciplinary action, academic penalty, or other sanction imposed by the district or the student’s school; and
  3. information describing the opportunities for parental involvement in the development of the curriculum to be used in human sexuality instruction, including information regarding the local school health advisory council established under Subsection (a).

A parent may use the grievance procedure adopted under Section 26.011 concerning a complaint of a violation of Subsection (i).

The Dripping Springs ISD Board of Trustees approved the Always Changing: Puberty and Stuff program by Procter and Gamble for students in Grade 5. This video-based basic anatomy presentation has a version for each gender and boys and girls are separated for the lesson in order to introduce developmentally appropriate information to each gender. The Dripping Springs ISD Board of Trustees approved the Big Decisions® program to be used in the middle school and high school health classes. The Big Decisions® program is an abstinence-plus program designed for students in Grades 7-12 that provides medically accurate and up-to-date information on STDs, teen pregnancy, and the laws concerning teens and sex. Role playing is used to help students learn about peer pressure, goal setting and setting limits. The curriculum is modified by District staff for students in Grades 7 and 8 to ensure the students are receiving age appropriate information specific to the needs of our middle school students.

The modified curriculum will be posted on the middle school website for review prior to beginning of the human sexuality instruction unit in health classes each semester. More information about Big Decisions® is available at http://www.bigdecisions.org.  In addition, the Austin LifeGuard Character and Sexuality Education assembly program may be used as an introduction to the sexual health unit. The abstinence-based program is designed to empower teens in the Austin area with accurate information and practical tools to help them make healthy decisions, build strong relationships, and fully experience the benefits of saving sex for marriage. More information about Austin LifeGuard is available at http://www.austinlifeguard.com.

Parents will be informed prior to the presentation of curriculum materials informing parents of program details, providing an opportunity for parents to review the curriculum materials in advance of their students, and providing parents the opportunity to remove their child from any part of the district’s human sexuality instruction without subjecting the student to any disciplinary action, academic penalty, or other sanction. Parents may also choose to become more involved with the development of curriculum used for this purpose by attending the district’s SHAC meetings or applying to be included as a member of the SHAC. Information about District Community Advisory Committees including SHAC and an application for a committee appointment is available on the District website at Dripping Springs ISD – Community Advisory Committees (www.dsisd.txed.net/index.aspx?nid=318).”

Austin Lifeguard · Big Decisions · Dripping Springs ISD

Dripping Springs ISD 2016-2017 SHAC Meetings

Dripping Springs ISD 2016-2017 SHAC Meetings:

“SHAC meetings will be held in room B301 of the DSISD Central Administrative Office from 5:30 to 7:00 p.m. on October 11, November 15, February 14, and April 11.”

According to the SHAC Recommendations from the 2015-2016 School Year, the Dripping Springs ISD SHAC will review the Human Sexuality Instruction in the 2016-2017 School Year.

“Recommendation 3

SHAC continues to promote the belief that all students in the DSISD should have exposure to a health education curriculum that includes a comprehensive sexuality education curriculum with a variety of sexuality education learning resources. Per the 3-year review cycle, the district’s health education curriculum will be reviewed by the SHAC during the 2016-2017 school year.”

Here is a link to the SHAC website – http://www.dsisd.txed.net/index.aspx?NID=372 including SHAC Roster.