Vagina, vagina, vagina!


Tim McDaniel, a 10th-grade science teacher in Dietrich, Idaho, is being investigated by the Idaho State Board of Education for “possible controversial lesson content.”

The content? Sex ed. The reason it’s being taught in science class? Because the school’s health teacher isn’t comfortable teaching students about birth control and STDs.

“Since I started working here about 17 years ago, I agreed to teach about the reproduction system because I was comfortable with it and he wasn’t,” McDaniel said. “This is the first time someone has objected to the material.” McDaniel, who teaches directly from a school-approved textbook, says that some parents are unhappy with him using the word “vagina” to teach biology.

Dietrich is squarely in the south-central section of Idaho, which in 2009 claimed the highest rate of teen pregnancy in the state, even as the rate dropped elsewhere across Idaho. It seems possible the community could benefit by talking about sex education, but you know what happens when we assume.

Check out HuffPo’s video here.

Join the Conversation

  • Emily

    How is it that the outcry seem always to be about the word “vagina” and never about the word “penis”? And what other word(s) should we be using instead? All the alternate words I can think of are offensive and inappropriate. Vagina is the appropriate anatomical term. I think we should be able to teach teenagers to use appropriate terminology for their own (and their peers’) body parts.

  • Lars Fischer

    *headdesk* 10th grade is actually too late to teach birth control and human reproduction. It’s a mystery how this can ever be “possible controversial lesson content.”.