Sunday, October 25, 2009

High School ain't like it used to be...

My sister was heading back to Louisiana over the weekend to reunite with some old friends from school so I tagged along. Its always nice to have yet another excuse to go visit my man.

As I waited for my sister to finish packing her car, my mom and I began giggling again about Rose's new friend. Mom then began telling me what she sees when picking up my niece who's a freshman in high school.

"I am sitting there watching all the kids, and this couple of kids comes out of school. You can't tell if it's one or two people walking, they are so close and wrapped up, just kissing like crazy. And I can also see the stairs on the 2nd floor, big windows, where a couple of kids have stopped, and oh my! I think they are going to take off each others' clothes. WHERE ARE THE TEACHERS?????????? DO THEY DO THIS NOW???????????

In my day, that would have been a good reason to be EXPELLED. I just can't believe what I am seeing, and when (my niece) gets in the car and I tell her about it, she says it goes on all the time, in the hallways, and in school."

Now, my sister lives in a very good school district in the family oriented suburbs of Dallas. I am shocked to hear that this happens and that the students get away with it.

Then again, I have also heard stories about kids being spoiled, given healthy allowances and allowed to do what they please in these upper-middle class areas.

Thankfully, my 14-year old niece has a good head on her shoulders.

Then my mother proceeded to tell me how, when my brother was in high school (mid-late 90's), there was a childhood nursery/daycare in the high school.

Are you freakin' kidding me?

I'm still in shock over that one. So... let's throw a big hissy fit about talking to our teens about safe sex. Let's all get our panties in a wad for making condoms readily available to teenagers. Let's get all judgmental when teens decide to make a vow of celibacy as a group.

But we're gonna enable them by providing daycare for the children they're having???

Yes, I know teenage pregnancy happens. Believe me, this was a subject that I too had to deal with in high school - not me personally but a couple of girls REALLY close to me.

I know it happens. But where in there does the school decide, "Oh well, may as well provide daycare for them..."?

I'm sorry. I can usually see both sides of an argument but this one sent me over the edge.

Does this happen everywhere? Is this a good thing and I'm just not seeing it?

13 comments:

  1. Here it is usually catholic high schools who have daycares in highschools. I think it is about their pro-life stance and wanting to do their best to ensure there are no abortions.

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  2. well I need to post on this but the school my kids go to has been in operation since 1972 and they have had one student and one teacher bred out of wedlock since then.

    They teach abstinence.

    You know me baby, just the facts!

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  3. I grew up in a small suburb of Seattle. We had a lot of pregnancies in high school (and even a couple in junior high). I'm not sure why. It wasn't a school that fit any of the usual risk factors. It was a good school in a solid working middle class neighborhood. The phenomenon seemed to be fairly confined to my particular high school; the same thing wasn't happening at the other nearby schools in the district. My graduating class was only 200, and I can think of 9 people who had babies before we graduated. (And that's just my class - there were at least as many in the class behind me.)

    Anyway, there was an "alternative" school in the district that had daycare facilities. Most of the girls didn't want to go there because the rest of the students at the alternative high schools were kids with behavioral problems. But there was definitely a utility to it. It allowed the girls to get back to school quickly (can't take much in the way of "maternity leave" if you want to graduate on time) and it allowed them to nurse if they wanted to go that route. The girls who chose to stay in our "regular" school were allowed to leave at lunch to nurse, but we all know that babies nurse more often than that in the beginning (and there was no way for the mothers to pump at school). And none of the girls could make it from school to daycare and back in the 30 minutes we had for lunch.

    So... I don't know if it makes sense for every high school to offer child care. But providing the option, at least in my district, kept some moms in school who otherwise would've dropped out or indefinitely postponed completing high school.

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  4. I think Martini Mom said it best. Because, like with adults, sometimes accidents happen, regardless of the sex education they might have received. Sometimes smart kids do stupid things and shouldn't be penalised for it.

    Because what's the alternative? Force a teenager out of school and an education that will better their life and their child's future?

    I can understand why it's confronting, I just think that providing an education to these teens is of paramount importance.

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  5. I'm torn on this topic myself. I totally understand the idea of not enabling these kids...but the point is, once a baby is on the scene, then I think that these girls should be helped to make as much of their lives as possible.

    Yes, safe sex should be taught to these kids, and condoms should be provided. Always, in my opinion. But for those kids who make mistakes and find themselves with babies are in for a very, very hard life, and the least that we can do as a society is to hopefully improve their situation, even a little bit, by providing them with a high school education. Because without even that small thing, then I think these girls are looking at a very grim future indeed.

    Great topic, T! :)

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  6. The reality is that if there was no daycare (and in many schools there isn't) then the students are forced into homebound or may just drop out. This gives the pregnant girls a way to keep going to school and finishing their high school education (and maybe even giong on to college).

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  7. I know all too well that sometimes pregnancy happens - even when a condom is used! I dont think making condoms available to teens encourages them to have sex but it does keep them protected if they're going to. I dont see how providing a way for the teen mothers to graduate highschool is a bad thing.

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  8. I agree that day care at the high school level is enabling. The adoption option for pregnant teenagers is a good one, and should be strongly encouraged as an alternative. Those kids who choose to keep their babies don't know what they're getting into.

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  9. I agree it is somewhat shocking, however if this enables the mother to finish school, then I am all for it. Being a young woman with a baby in tow is hard enough, we don't need to complicate matters by making that woman uneducated in the process.

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  10. Back in my day, high school kids walked together, wrapped so close, you couldn't tell if it was one or two kids. I was one of them! Your mom needs to lighten up on that.

    As for teen pregnancy, we had some girls in my high school class get pregnant. At the time, I found it pretty unbelievable. And sad. My heart went out to those teen parents. They had no idea what they were getting into. Kind of like Sarah Palin's daughter.

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  11. I was a good kid...but I got pregnant young - not highschool but prior to college. I also went to a religious school and a girl who became pregnant was kicked out. The support system she had was suddenly GONE - it was terrible.


    Yes, some people will take advantage of the service - that's true with anything. HOWEVER, how many in comparison to those that could be helped to graduate? The important concept here is keeping girls OFF public aide in the future by helping them get their education.In turn, providing a level of support for those who cannot be supported elsewhere (I have known girls who get kicked out of their home). It's a small thing to do, really, in the grand scheme of things.

    I, personally, think the best sex education would entail spending the day with a young parent in the community (perhaps an exchange for using the daycare facilities). I didn't know what I was getting into when I was pregnant at 19, and I think I would have been more careful had I known.

    There is NO way to stop teenage pregnancy. What I can say is that providing a way to help girls stay in school and create opportunties for the future is better than the alternatives.


    It's a controversial subject indeed and I think it's best served as it is now - not as a blanket policy but as a district by district/ state by state sort of thing.

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  12. Wow. Well, see? You all made some very valid points. I just didn't realize it was readily available to pregnant teens. Both of the girls that I knew who came up pregnant in high school unfortunately got abortions. And I was there for both of them.

    *sigh*

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  13. I really don't know how I feel about this. It's obviously very important that these mothers get an education but I don't know if making things easier for them is a good thing. I can see them going and telling their friends how easy it is. Do the girls pay for the daycare? Do they have to volunteer their time? Is there a program they have to follow? I'm very torn on this.

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