TO AMEND SECTION 59-32-20, AS AMENDED, CODE OF LAWS OF SOUTH CAROLINA, 1976, RELATING TO THE REQUIRED CYCLICAL REVIEW AND REVISION OF CERTAIN MENTAL, EMOTIONAL, AND SOCIAL HEALTH STANDARDS AND CONCEPTS REQUIRED UNDER THE COMPREHENSIVE HEALTH EDUCATION ACT, SO AS TO PROVIDE THE STATE BOARD OF EDUCATION SHALL DEVELOP CERTAIN GRADE-APPROPRIATE INSTRUCTIONAL UNITS IN MENTAL HEALTH AND WELLNESS THROUGH THE STATE DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION BEFORE SEPTEMBER 1, 2022, TO PROVIDE THE BOARD SHALL CONTINUE TO MAKE STANDARDS-ALIGNED INSTRUCTIONAL MATERIALS AVAILABLE TO SCHOOL DISTRICTS IN ADDITION TO CURRENT STANDARDS, AND TO PROVIDE SCHOOL DISTRICTS SHALL CONTINUE TO ADOPT OR DEVELOP RELATED CURRICULUM LOCALLY; AND TO AMEND SECTION 59-32-30, RELATING TO COURSEWORK REQUIREMENTS OF THE COMPREHENSIVE HEALTH EDUCATION ACT, SO AS TO PROVIDE SEVENTH GRADE AND NINTH GRADE STUDENTS MUST BE OFFERED ONE SUCH UNIT OF MENTAL HEALTH AND WELLNESS BEGINNING WITH THE 2022-2023 SCHOOL YEAR.
Be it enacted by the General Assembly of the State of South Carolina:
SECTION 1. Section 59-32-20 of the 1976 Code, as last amended by Act 170 of 2020, is further amended by adding a subsection at the end to read:
"(E) In addition to the provisions of subsections (A) and (D), before September 1, 2022, the board, through the department, shall select or develop instructional units in mental health and wellness, with separate units appropriate for seventh grade students and ninth grade students. In addition to the current standards, the board shall continue to make standards-aligned instructional materials available to districts. Districts shall continue to adopt or develop curriculum locally."
SECTION 2. Section 59-32-30(A) of the 1976 Code is amended to read:
"(A) Pursuant to guidelines developed by the board, each local school board shall implement the following program of instruction:
(1) Beginning with the
1988-89 1988-1989 School Year, for grades kindergarten through five, instruction in comprehensive health education must include the following subjects: community health, consumer health, environmental health, growth and development, nutritional health, personal health, prevention and control of diseases and disorders, safety and accident prevention, substance use and abuse, dental health, and mental and emotional health. Sexually transmitted diseases as defined in the annual Department of Health and Environmental Control List of Reportable Diseases are to be excluded from instruction on the prevention and control of diseases and disorders. At the discretion of the local board, age-appropriate instruction in reproductive health may be included.
(2) Beginning with the 1988-1989 School Year, for grades six through eight, instruction in comprehensive health must include the following subjects: community health, consumer health, environmental health, growth and development, nutritional health, personal health, prevention and control of diseases and disorders, safety and accident prevention, substance use and abuse, dental health, mental and emotional health, and reproductive health education. Sexually transmitted diseases are to be included as a part of instruction. At the discretion of the local board, instruction in family life education or pregnancy prevention education or both may be included, but instruction in these subjects may not include an explanation of the methods of contraception before the sixth grade. Beginning with the 2016-2017 School Year, for grades six through eight, instruction in comprehensive health education also must include the subject of domestic violence.
(3) Beginning with the
1989-90 1989-1990 School Year, at least one time during the four years of grades nine through twelve, each student shall receive instruction in comprehensive health education, including at least seven hundred fifty minutes of reproductive health education and pregnancy prevention education.
(4) Beginning with the 2022-2023 School Year, each:
(a) seventh grade student must be offered one unit of instruction in mental health and wellness based on the instructional unit selected or adopted by the board in Section 59-32-20(D); and
(b) ninth grade student must be offered a one unit course of study in mental health and wellness based on the instructional unit selected or adopted by the board in Section 59-32-20(D). This course may be delivered virtually.
(5) The South Carolina Educational Television Commission shall work with the department in developing instructional programs and materials that may be available to the school districts. Films and other materials may be designed for the purpose of explaining bodily functions or the human reproductive process. These materials may not contain actual or simulated portrayals of sexual activities or sexual intercourse.
(5)(6) The program of instruction provided for in this section may not include a discussion of alternate sexual lifestyles from heterosexual relationships including, but not limited to, homosexual relationships except in the context of instruction concerning sexually transmitted diseases.
(6)(7) In grades nine through twelve, students must also be given appropriate instruction that adoption is a positive alternative.
(7)(8) At least one time during the entire four years of grades nine through twelve, each student shall receive instruction in cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR), which must include, but not be limited to, hands-only CPR and must include awareness in the use of an automated external defibrillator (AED). Each school district shall use a program that incorporates the instruction of the psychomotor skills necessary to perform CPR developed by the American Heart Association, the American Red Cross, or an instructional program that is nationally recognized and based on the most current national evidence-based emergency cardiovascular care guidelines for CPR and awareness in the use of an AED. Local and statewide school districts shall coordinate with entities that have the experience and necessary equipment for the instruction of CPR and awareness in the use of AEDs; provided, however, that virtual schools may administer the instruction virtually and are exempt from any in-person instructional requirements. A school district must adopt a policy providing a waiver for this requirement for a student absent on the day the instruction occurred, a student with a disability whose individualized education program indicates such student is unable to complete all or a portion of the hands-only CPR requirement, or a student whose parent or guardian completes, in writing, a form approved by the school district opting out of hands-only CPR instruction and AED awareness. The State Board of Education shall incorporate CPR training and AED awareness into the South Carolina Health and Safety Education Curriculum Standards and promulgate regulations to implement this section."
SECTION 3. This act takes effect upon approval by the Governor.