Nov. 7, 2004 – The Texas Board of Education has approved new health textbooks that specifically define marriage as between one man and one woman and focus on abstinence only sex education. The decision comes after the board pressured the publishers to change what one board member referred to as "asexual stealth phrases" in favor of more gender-specific language, reports the Associated Press.
At the Boardâ€™s request, publishers Glencoe/McGraw-Hill and Holt Rinehart & Winston, changed the phrases "married partners" to "husband and wife." According to the AP, Holt Rinehart & Winston included the definition of marriage as a "lifelong union between a husband and a wife," while Glencoe/McGraw-Hill changed "when two people marry" to "when a man and a woman marry" and "partners" to "husbands and wives."
The Board also chose textbooks that all but leave out contraception as an option for preventing pregnancy or sexually transmitted diseases. According to Reuters, three out of four approved texts fail to mention contraception at all, while one only mentions condoms in passing.
The Boardâ€™s critics said that in addition to putting teens at risk, the decision may violate state regulations, which require sex education curriculum to include information about contraception. Board members countered that the books were satisfactory because information about contraceptives is included in teaching supplements or teachersâ€™ editions.