WAUSAU, Wis. (WFRV) – For about 30 minutes, members of the Wausau School Board listened to comments from parents and students alike regarding concerns about its sex education policy.

Before taking comments from the public, Wausau School District Superintendent Keith Hilts apologized for not communicating about the issue more proactively. The controversy appears to stem from a proposed change to the policy manual of Human Growth and Development.

The changes removed mention of the use of contraceptives and barrier methods. The new policy would solely list abstinence as the only reliable way to prevent pregnancy and sexually transmitted infections. That document with the changes can be viewed here (2414 Human Growth and Development).

Hilts reiterated that nothing is getting removed from the Human Growth and Development curriculum, and the only purpose for the change is to make sure that school board policies are in lockstep with state statutes. He again stressed that the curriculum was not getting changed.

One by one, parents and current high school and middle school students voiced concerns. One of the concerns brought up by multiple people was the worry that changes in the policy could lead to changes in the curriculum.

In addition to public comments, there were multiple people who reportedly wrote in.

Before the meeting, Superintendent Keith Hilts issued a video statement providing some background on the situation. Hilts said that the Human Growth and Development curriculum is not getting changed.

“The running message is that we are only going to teach abstinence in Human Growth and Development. Not True. That is not true,” said Hilts.

The full meeting can be viewed here. The public comment portion starts around the four-minute mark and ends around the 33-minute mark.

Wausau is just over an hour and a half northwest of Green Bay.