SPARCC suspended from Sarasota County Schools for sex-ed video
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SPARCC suspended from Sarasota County Schools for sex-ed video

The Sarasota County School District is under fire because of a video that has been deemed “inappropriate.” The video, shown to a single class at Pine View High School by a Safe Place and Rape Crisis Center (SPARCC) counselor on Nov. 7, discussed consent in sexual interactions. The video was created by Planned Parenthood (PP) and depicts couples of different sexualities kissing and touching to re-create scenarios in which people should ask for and give consent.

The issues being faced are that this video was not the consent-education approved by the Sarasota County School Board and that parents have complained that the acted-out consent scenarios in the PP video are too graphic for teenagers. The approved video discusses sexual consent with the metaphor of making and serving tea. The SPARCC counselor went off-script and showed PP’s consent video instead of the approved video without the knowledge of the SPARCC program. The School Board claimed that they were not aware of the change in consent videos and that this counselor “took it upon herself to show this un-approved video.”

The physical intimacy displayed in the PP video does not go beyond kissing. Topics discussed in the PP video, and absent from the tea video, are the importance of honesty, trust and open communication with a partner—even after giving consent. The tea consent video includes stick figure drawings and the making of tea in lieu of asking for sexual consent. The main narrator in the PP video ends with this statement: “It’s easy to talk about what consent means, but what does it look like in real life?”

According to News Channel 8, “The school district has now suspended SPARCC from presenting in Sarasota County schools and reinforced guest speaker protocols with staff.”


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