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Hawaii to make middle school sex ed class opt-in


HONOLULU — Hawaii is making its sex education classes for middle school students opt-in, giving parents responsibility to affirm they want their children to be taught the course.

The Department of Education said Friday that the shift from an opt-out policy is one of 12 changes the department is immediately making to improve curriculum review and help parents be part of the sexual education process.

The changes come after objections to the new program titled “Pono Choices,” which has been criticized by some state lawmakers and others.

State Rep. Bob McDermott, a Republican who repeatedly said the curriculum wasn’t medically accurate and was a form of social engineering, said Friday the changes are a partial victory.

But McDermott says he plans to spend the weekend reviewing the department’s report and changes.