Colorado Department of Education Sexual Health Standards

  • In December 2011, Boards of Education in Colorado were required to adopt the new Colorado Department of Education Academic Standards for Physical Education and Comprehensive Health. These standards are the first ever of this type in Colorado and implementation of the standards is ongoing and unique within each school district in Colorado. In each lesson, the Comprehensive Health Standards that are being met addressed are outlined. Concepts and skills that students will master during the lesson, evidence outcomes, inquiry questions, relevance and applications of the standards to the health and well-being of students are included.

    The Depth of Knowledge (DOK) measures (indicated in the standards provided by the Colorado Department of Education) are based on a model developed by Norman Webb. DOK measures cognitive demand, or complexity, and is assigned using a hierarchy of levels 1 through 4. You will see these indicated with each evidence outcome for the standards.  Twenty-five percent of Colorado's Comprehensive Health Standards require up to a DOK 4. 

    There are specific standards that relate to sexual and reproductive health, gender-based violence and relationships and are based on three of the Comprehensive Health Standards. The three academic standards for Comprehensive Health are :

    Standard 2: Physical and Personal Wellness-Includes physical activity, healthy eating, sexual health and teaches lifelong habits and patterns. Standard 2 examines society, media and peer influences, decision-making and communication. It also includes health promotion and disease prevention and teaches responsibility and skills for healthy behavior. It recognizes the physical, mental and social dimensions of personal health.

    Standard 3: Emotional and Social Wellness-Includes mental, emotional and social health skills to recognize and manage emotions, establish positive relationships, make responsible decisions, resolve conflicts and manage stress.

    Standard 4: Prevention and Risk Management-Includes tobacco and drug prevention; violence prevention and teaches skills to increase safety. Practices decision making and communication skills to avoid drug use, bullying and intimate partner violence.