Which teachers talk about sex? Psychosocial determinants of educator engagement with high school learners on HIV/AIDS and sexual practices

Abstract

As a result of the call for educators to provide HIV prevention and education to learners, this study sought to investigate those individual and psycho-social factors associated with high educator-learner interactions around the subject of HIV and sexuality. This study found that younger educators and educators in lower job categories interacted with learners on issues relating to HIV and sexuality far more frequently than their older colleagues. Further, favourable educator-learner interactions were associated with factors such as: a good level of HIV/AIDS knowledge, personal experience with HIV/AIDS and low stigmatizing attitudes towards the disease. Whilst there is evidence of a high number of educator-learner interactions on issues related to HIV/AIDS and sexuality, of concern, is the perceived lack of HIV/AIDS educational and training support for educators by the Department of Education. Compounding this is the relatively high degree of sexual risk behavior reported amongst younger educators as compared to their older counterparts, which undermines their credibility as HIV prevention educators. These findings amplify the call for formal training to be provided to educators to ensure that they are equipped to adequately provide HIV education and sexual life skills training to the learners with whom they interact.

Citation

George, G.; Goverder, K.; Reardon, C. Which teachers talk about sex? Psychosocial determinants of educator engagement with high school learners on HIV/AIDS and sexual practices. Journal of Education (2010) 50: 83-114.

Which teachers talk about sex? Psychosocial determinants of educator engagement with high school learners on HIV/AIDS and sexual practices

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