Skip to main content

Vagina. Can you say that word out loud? Go ahead, give it a try. I'll wait.

I know, I know, anatomically correct, scientific body part names are difficult to say out loud. Don't even get me started on pelvis, femur, ulna...

Sound ridiculous? Just wait: A science teacher in Dietrich, Idaho, is "under investigation" for saying the word vagina - in a sex-ed class, of all inconceivable places. In a week of bizarre anatomy-related news (Jon Hamm's penis, Justin Bieber's lack of shirt) this could be the most ludicrous story yet.

Story continues below advertisement

According the Magic Valley Times-News, parents have launched a complaint against Tim McDaniel's teaching of the reproductive system, in which he dared to discuss the biology of an orgasm and use the word vagina.

"As a parent, I want to be notified in advance that this content is going to be taught in class," Katie Norman, who has four children in the school system, told the paper.

"It's important to teach this to kids," McDaniel rebuked. "Hopefully, the students are being abstinent but most of these students will be getting married a year or two after graduation and they need to know about this."

What would be a fireable offence, I'd imagine, is trying to teach 15-year-old kids about sex without using the word vagina. Every synonym out there is a less favourable option.

So many questions: Isn't Grade 10 a little late to be learning about vaginas? Why are they teaching teenagers, through implication, that the vagina - or at least the word - is something to be ashamed of? Did the teacher say "penis," and were we all okay with that? What about - gasp - ovaries?

What's even more stupefying about this story? McDaniel - again, a science teacher - is covering the sex education course in the first place because the school's health teacher is "uncomfortable" with the material, according to the area's superintendent Neil Hollingshead.

It's a strange, scary world out there. High school students have many things to fear, but let's not make a female body part one of them.

Report an error Editorial code of conduct
Due to technical reasons, we have temporarily removed commenting from our articles. We hope to have this fixed soon. Thank you for your patience. If you are looking to give feedback on our new site, please send it along to feedback@globeandmail.com. If you want to write a letter to the editor, please forward to letters@globeandmail.com.

Welcome to The Globe and Mail’s comment community. This is a space where subscribers can engage with each other and Globe staff. Non-subscribers can read and sort comments but will not be able to engage with them in any way. Click here to subscribe.

If you would like to write a letter to the editor, please forward it to letters@globeandmail.com. Readers can also interact with The Globe on Facebook and Twitter .

Welcome to The Globe and Mail’s comment community. This is a space where subscribers can engage with each other and Globe staff. Non-subscribers can read and sort comments but will not be able to engage with them in any way. Click here to subscribe.

If you would like to write a letter to the editor, please forward it to letters@globeandmail.com. Readers can also interact with The Globe on Facebook and Twitter .

Discussion loading ...

Cannabis pro newsletter