Scan Current Efforts and Policies

The purpose of this phase is to gain an understanding of the sex education landscape to inform an action plan for sex education institutionalization.

About This Phase 

Scanning activities provide essential context, such as state and local policies and available resources. A great place to start is with the SIECUS State Profiles. A key part of this phase is identifying school districts, or individual schools, who want to implement sex education or improve existing programs but need some guidance and resources in order to do so effectively. This phase helps answer the questions: “What policies, partners, and resources can support this work?” and “Which districts show promise for sex education readiness?”

Steps to Scan Current Efforts and Policies

Step Results
Learn the Policy Landscape
  • Clear understanding of the sex education components that are allowed, mandated, or restricted.
Determine the Funding Landscape and Explore Potential Resources
  • Identification of potential sex education funding streams as well as the currently funded efforts already underway
Identify School Districts for Potential Sex Education Implementation
  • List of promising school districts that show strong readiness for sex education institutionalization

The long-term sustainability of gains made during this phase of the work is supported by:

  • Creating linkages between relevant state and local programs, including mechanisms for ongoing sharing about successes and strategies, to maximize impact.


Editor's Pick!

State Profiles

SIECUS State Profiles is a state-by-state resource that describes sexuality education and abstinence-only-until-marriage programs in each state.  Each state profile includes a summary of state laws and policies related to sexuality education.

State School Health Policy Database

The NASBE State School Health Policy Database contains brief descriptions of laws, legal codes, rules, regulations, administrative orders, mandates, standards, resolutions, and other written means of exercising authority.

Editor's Pick!

State Policies in Brief, Sex and HIV Education

The Guttmacher Institute’s State Policies in Brief provide state-by-state information on key issues affecting sexual and reproductive health and rights. The publications are updated monthly to reflect the most recent legislative, administrative, and judicial actions.

State Education Data Profiles

This database provides access to statewide information on education system characteristics (e.g., number of students, schools, teachers), finances, assessments and selected demographics. Cross-state comparison tools are also available.

School Health Profiles

The School Health Profiles are a system of surveys assessing school health policies and practices in states, large urban school districts, territories, and tribal governments.

School Health Policies and Practices Study (SHPPS)

SHPPS is a national survey periodically conducted to assess school health policies and practices at the state, district, school, and classroom levels.

Youth Risk Behavior Surveillance System (YRBSS)

The YRBSS monitors six priority health-risk behaviors among youth and young adults including sexual behaviors that contribute to unintended pregnancy and STDs/HIV, alcohol and other drug use as well as violence. Annual and trend data is available.  

Division of Adolescent and School Health (DASH)

DASH supports 19 state and 17 local education agencies to support schools and school districts in implementing exemplary sexual health education, increase adolescent access to sexual health services and establish safe and supportive environments for students and staff.

School Health Advisory Council

This sample presentation discusses the role and function of School Health Advisory Councils (SHACs) as well as tips for successful recruitment and retention of SHAC members.

Sample School District Stakeholder Message Development

Georgia Campaign for Adolescent Power & Potential (GCAPP), a WISE lead partner, developed a simple tool to document the various needs of key constituency groups.

Pipeline Tracking Tool

This spreadsheet can be helpful in tracking status of potential partner school districts.  

Preliminary Assessment

Based on a similar tool developed by SHIFT NC, this preliminary assessment provides an early gauge of whether or not a school district shows promise.