Plans for a student health clinic at the Culver City Middle and High schools drew few objections from parents at meeting last week with school and UCLA officials, leaving the way clear for presentation of the proposal to the city's school board.
The meeting, attended by more than 100 parents, was held a week after a student-parent advisory committee to the Culver City Board of Education recommended that the campus clinic be allowed to dispense contraceptives to students whose parents sign a consent form. The clinic would be administered by UCLA health officials.
The advisory panel also has recommended that the clinic provide 17 other services, including treatment of minor illnesses, mental-health counseling and gynecological examinations.
Dec. 16 Presentation
Vera Jashni, assistant superintendent of the Culver City Unified School District, said she plans to present the committee's recommendations to the school board on Dec. 16.
The advisory committee would have reconsidered its opinion if parents had raised strong objections, Jashni said.
Written questions submitted to Jashni and UCLA health representatives at the Wednesday night meeting included some on the extent of birth control-related services to be offered by the clinic.
Adrienne Davis, head of the clinic project for UCLA, said students would be required to attend a class on sexuality and birth-control methods before receiving contraceptives.
No Abortion Counseling
The clinic would not offer abortion counseling but might refer students to an agency that does, she said.
UCLA intends to finance the clinic through foundation grants, Davis said. Culver City officials have said they would offer city funds if the clinic is open not only to students at the two schools, but to all middle and high school students in the city.
The clinic intends to offer the services citywide, Davis said.
Tom Long, director of adolescent medicine at UCLA Medical School, said the clinic would see about 25 student patients a day.
He said no surgery would be performed other than setting bones. Students with major injuries and illnesses would be sent to hospitals, he said.
Covered by Insurance
Any claims arising from side effects experienced by students from contraceptives dispensed at the clinic would be covered by UCLA's malpractice insurance policy, Long said.
If allowed by the school board, the clinic would offer birth control pills, sponges, jellies, condoms and diaphragms.
UCLA officials used results of a survey of Culver City students, parents and teachers in arguing for the need for the clinic and birth control services.
Of the 1,197 middle school and high school students surveyed, 29% of the middle school students and 54% of the high school students said they had had sexual intercourse. Of those, 36% of the middle school students and 52% of the high school students said they used a contraceptive the last time they had sex.
Sandy Segal, school nurse, reported that 11 students on the schools' joint campus gave birth last year, compared to only two or three in previous years.