A national organization, the Association of Maternal and Child Health Programs, selected the Pono Choices program for a Maternal Child Health best practice award earlier this year. Based in the University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa College of Education’s Center on Disability Studies, Pono Choices is a sex education curriculum for middle school students designed to reduce teen pregnancies and the spread of sexually-transmitted infections.
Pono Choices is the first teen pregnancy and sexually transmitted infection (STI) prevention curriculum developed exclusively for youth ages 11 to 13 in Hawai‘i. The curriculum is culturally responsive and introduces students to Hawaiian cultural terms, practices, and concepts that stress positive character development, including making “pono” choices.
Teen pregnancy and STIs are serious public health issues. Hawai‘i’s STI epidemic is most severe among young people, especially young women. For example, Hawai‘i has the 12th worst chlamydia rate and the 10th highest teen pregnancy rate in the nation, and only 54 percent of Hawai‘i’s high school students reported using condoms during their last sexual intercourse — the lowest percentage of any state in the nation. Additional information can be found on the Hawaii Department of Education website.
Pono Choices - Latest News
Pono Choices added to the national Association of Maternal & Child Health Programs best practices database
In March 2019 Pono Choices was formally added to the Innovation Station Best Practices database maintained by the Association of Maternal & Child Health Programs.
Pono Choices designated a Maternal & Child Health best practice by the national Association of Maternal & Child Health Programs
In January 2019 Pono Choices was designated a Maternal & Child Health best practice by the national
Starting next year, public schools in Hawaii will be required to offer sex education to students —
The authors of Pono Choices want to let the public know that the curriculum is not dead. In fact, the DOE review panel made a few recommendations for changes which are projected to be completed by the end of July. Here is the link to the press release: http://www.hawaiipublicschools.org/ConnectWithUs/MediaRoom/PressReleases/Pages/sex-ed-report.aspx