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School Condom Policy: Mass. Governor Blasts Plan to Give Condoms to Grade-Schoolers

AP
AP
(CBS/AP) Free condoms for grade schoolers?

Not so fast, says Massachusetts Gov. Deval Patrick.

Patrick urged a Cape Cod school superintendent to reconsider the idea of giving out free condoms to all students who ask for them - including kids as young as first grade.

"Comprehensive reproductive health education needs to be done in an age appropriate manner," Patrick said in a statement reported by WBZ television in Boston. "In those instances where local communities have agreed to make condoms available in school clinical settings, the norm - according to our Department of Public Health - is high school."

If the policy is implemented, condoms will be available to all Provincetown public school students this fall. Any student requesting a condom from a school nurse must first receive counseling, which includes information on abstinence. Parents would not be notified.

The policy has already taken its share of knocks. Kris Mineau, president of the conservative Massachusetts Family Institute, calls it absurd.

But Provincetown School Board Chairman Peter Grosso defends the policy, saying there is no set age when sexual activity starts.

The policy was approved by Provincetown's school committee June 10.