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Governor Approves ‘Yes Means Yes’ Sexual Consent Education for California High Schools

SAN FRANCISCO – Gov. Jerry Brown has approved legislation aimed at making California the first state in the nation to bring lessons about sexual consent required at many colleges into high schools, his office announced Thursday.

Last year, California became the first to require colleges and universities to apply an “affirmative consent” or “yes means yes” standard when investigating campus sexual assault claims. That policy says sexual activity is only considered consensual when both partners clearly state their willingness to participate through “affirmative, conscious and voluntary agreement” at every stage.

The legislation Brown endorsed requires that school districts include health as a graduation requirement to teach about “yes means yes” and sexual violence prevention starting next year. It also asks state education officials to update curriculum guidelines for high school health classes with information about those topics.