Jin Ding/China Daily
Shaanxi province has asked senior middle schools to provide AIDS prevention education for students.
According to a plan (2020-22) introduced by 10 provincial departments, including the Health Commission of Shaanxi province and the Shaanxi provincial government's education department, sexual health and AIDS prevention education should be incorporated into students' courses and group activities in junior middle schools, while senior middle schools should have at least four class hours of AIDS education.
Although China is focused on controlling the spread of AIDS, youngsters are a new problem. According to the Sexually Transmitted Disease and AIDS Prevention and Control Center at the Chinese Center for Disease Control and Prevention, in recent years, students aged 15 to 24 account for 3,000 new infections every year.
Although the rate of HIV infection among youngsters is not very high yet, the trend is worrying, as more younger age people are getting infected and male-to-male transmission is becoming a major channel for HIV spread.
That is why sex education, which was not compulsory all these days because of a conservative mindset, has become important.
According to a 2018 survey by the Beijing Changier Education Foundation to study AIDS education trends among youngsters, only 24.79 percent of senior middle school students know of HIV transmission channels; awareness is even lower among junior and primary middle school students.
The lack of sex education, particularly AIDS education, exposes the juveniles to great risks, as they do not know what precautions to take to protect themselves.
That is why even the National Health Commission and nine other central departments insist on incorporating AIDS prevention education in the national implementation plan for containing the spread of AIDS(2019-22).
And it is good to see Shaanxi trying to educate young students in time to help curb the spread of AIDS.