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“Every time we said we wanted sex ed, everyone said ‘Sex Ed’ was already doing it, but he’s really doing something very different.” The Youth Commission decides to fight for comprehensive, fact-based sex education in the town’s public schools.

Shelby takes up the campaign with missionary fervor and runs for “mayor” of the Youth Commission, but another teen, Corey Nichols, wins and she is devastated.

A national evaluation of abstinence programs has been delayed, and is expected in 2006.

In the fall of 2001, Shelby, then a 15-year-old high school sophomore, budding opera singer and politically conservative Southern Baptist, joined the Lubbock Youth Commission, a group of high school students empowered by the mayor to give Lubbock’s youth a voice in city government.

“We get no [sex] education at all in school,” says Shelby in The Education of Shelby Knox.