LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online)  - In the Vatican's official newspaper, Church officials blasted the decision of New York officials on Wednesday, criticizing the approach which teaches students how to use contraceptives and when to can have sex. The Church has pointed out the high rates of pregnancy, abortion, and sexually transmitted diseases in those places where parents leave sex education to the state. 

The statement accused governments of ignoring the problem and criticized the, "failed utopia of the sexual revolution and subsequent breakdown of...the family." The paper also compared such states to Italy, where sex education is left to parents, the prevalence of pregnancies and problems like abortion and STDs are low. The newspaper attributed Italian parenting for the better conditions there. 

The paper continued, "Kids are not left to themselves with a box of contraceptives as the only defense against their passions and mistakes." Defenders of the mandate claim that parents will be able to opt-out their children, but only on the lessons involving birth-control methods. 

Most schools in New York offer some form of sex education, but the implementation is generally left to school principals and local officials who decide how and what should be taught. The new mandate, promoted by Governor Bloomberg will apply a single-one-size-fits-all approach to the issue. New York will begin teaching sex education to students in the 6th or 7th grade and repeat the lessons in the 9th or 10th grades. 

The mandate is a part of a larger set of programs aimed at the urban poor, particularly blacks and Latinos in New York, who have more pregnancies and suffer higher rates of  abortions and STDs than in other places. Other components of the mandate will teach better eating habits and the importance of exercise. 

The Church will undoubtedly remain outspoken on the issue. The state cannot replace the love of parents of the guidance of faith in establishing moral boundaries for children.