Personal Responsibility Education Program

Federal Guidance

The purpose of the federally funded Personal Responsibility Education Program (PREP) is to:

  • Educate youth on both abstinence and contraception for the prevention of pregnancy and sexually transmitted infections (STIs), including HIV/AIDS
  • Educate adolescents on at least three adulthood preparation subjects and life skills
  • Replicate evidence-based effective program models
  • Target youth populations that are the most high-risk or vulnerable for pregnancies

Statutory Authority: Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act of 2010, Title V, Section 513


Iowa's Personal Responsibility Education Program provides sexuality education to adolescents that is medically accurate, culturally and age-appropriate, and evidence-based and informed. PREP is implemented in Iowa with the goal of assisting youth to reduce their risk of unintended pregnancy, HIV/AIDS, and other sexually transmitted infections (STIs). In addition to education on abstinence and contraceptive use, PREP also addresses other topics to prepare young people for a successful adulthood. Adult preparation subjects include healthy relationships, adolescent development, healthy life skills, parent-child communication, financial literacy, and educational and career success.

State PREP Vision

Iowa youth are empowered to make healthy choices and positive decisions regarding sexual behavior as they prepare for successful adulthood.

Iowa's PREP will focus on the following priority populations:

  • Youth ages 10-19 who are residing in areas of the state with the highest teen birth rates

IDPH is the administrator of Iowa's PREP funding and awards contracts to community-based organizations and agencies to deliver PREP programming. Local contractors deliver programs in multiple high risk counties in Iowa. IDPH underwent a rigorous prioritization process that looked at a number of indicators related to teen pregnancy to determine which counties would be targeted to receive programming. Agencies then proposed to deliver PREP, through a competitive selection process, in the identified high risk counties. 

PREP contractors implement one of two evidence-based and evidence-informed teen pregnancy prevention programs to youth in their area. PREP is delivered through a mix of school and community-based settings, as well as after-school programs. The selected evidence-based and informed curricula are:

Since programming began in 2012, more than 2,500 youth have attended at least one PREP session. PREP programming is currently being delivered in nine Iowa counties while striving to have a positive impact on youth.

PREP Evaluation

IDPH contracts with the University of Iowa Public Policy Center to conduct a statewide evaluation of the PREP program. The following reports detail the evaluations conducted of the Iowa PREP program. 

IDPH also participates in the national PREP evaluation by reporting PREP performance measures data.

One of Iowa's contracted sites implementing the Wise Guys curriculum model has been chosen for an in-depth study as part of the national PREP evaluation conducted by Mathematica Policy Research. The following documents detail the evaluation and describe the implementation of the program at that site.


For more information contact

Tina Palmer

Community Health Consultant



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