K-12 Responsible Sexual Behavior Initiative



In 2002, The Cleveland Metropolitan School District (CMSD) adopted the Comprehensive Health Plan, complete with goals and objectives designed to improve the overall health and well-being of staff and students. One of the critical health indicators in that plan is Responsible Sexual Behavior. Four main goals were drafted to serve as flagships to creating sexually healthy and responsible students:

  • Prevent school-age parenthood among male and female students

  • Support pregnant and parenting school-age male and female students

  • Prevent the transmission of STDs, including HIV/AIDS, to male and female students.

  • Support male and female students living with STDs, including HIV/AIDS.

In June of 2006, the District was approached by Cleveland Mayor Frank G. Jackson, with an opportunity to fill gaps in comprehensive sexuality education, allowing the District to go to scale with programming for every K-12 student.  After an extensive review of evidence-based, age-appropriate curricula by a committee of community partners, four curricula were chosen: All About Life (for grades K-3); F.L.A.S.H. (for grades 4-6); Making Proud Choices (for grades 7-8); and Safer Choices (for grades 9-12).  An implementation plan was developed and the K-12 Responsible Sexual Behavior (RSB) initiative launched in the 2006-2007 school year.


This initiative is supported by CMSD’s CEO Dr. Eugene T. W. Sanders, Mayor Frank G. Jackson, and Cuyahoga County Commissioners Timothy Hagan, Peter Lawson Jones, and Jimmy Dimora.  Significant funding for the 2006-2007 school year was provided through Cuyahoga County Commissioners’ allocation of TANF funds, with additional support from the Cleveland Department of Public Health.  In subsequent years, The Cleveland Foundation, The George Gund Foundation, and AIDS Funding Collaborative have provided additional funding.


In the 2006-2007 school year, Responsible Sexual Behavior curricula were delivered by internal CMSD Health Services Adolescent Liaisons, and six community partner agencies.[1]  That same year, training was initiated with 14 CMSD health and physical education teachers to enable them to teach the curricula in their respective schools the following year.  In 2007-2008, the plan for curriculum delivery shifted to educators from six community agencies and the 14 health and PE teachers who had been trained the year before.  In 2008-2009, the focus is on building internal CMSD capacity by training at least one health or PE teacher from every school to deliver curricula in their schools during the course of the year.  Two community agencies are delivering curricula in the 9th and 10th grades.   

HIV/AIDS Fact Sheets by Grade Level

Grades K - 3 |  Grades 4 - 6 |  Grades 7 and 8 |  Grades 9 - 12


For additional information contact:

Karen Thompson, Interim Deputy Chief/Curriculum & Instruction

(216) 348-3648

Desiree M. Powell, Supervisor of Health and Physical Education
(216) 858-6544

Lita M. Townsend, RSB Supervisor

(216) 858-1296

For press inquiries, contact CMSD External Affairs Office at (216) 858-6468.

[1] AGAPE, Beech Brook, Hispanic UMADAOP, May Dugan Center, Murtis Taylor Multi-Service Center, and Planned Parenthood of Northeast Ohio.