According to StayTeen.org,
“Parenthood is the leading reason why teen girls drop out of school . . . Less than half of teen mothers ever graduate from high school and fewer than 2% earn a college degree by age 30.
Children of teen mothers do worse in school than those born to older parents—they are 50% more likely to repeat a grade, are less likely to complete high school than the children of older mothers, and have lower performance on standardized tests.”
There are those who believe that early childhood education should begin at age three or four. However, early childhood education must begin with the parents, before the child is ever born.
As soon as a school age girl becomes pregnant, both her and the father of the baby should be enrolled in a Young Parents program. Generally these young people have no clue as to the problems they will encounter as parents and have even less knowledge and understanding about how to solve those problems.
A comprehensive program, with wrap-around services for both the mother and father, would include a life skills work readiness program in addition to college and career path programs. These young parents must be taught how to care for themselves first, then for the person with whom they chose to have sexual relations, and most importantly, both parents must learn to care for the child.
Young parents can be taught how to manage a household account for math credit. They can be taught how to properly manage their diet and that of the baby for health credit. Learning to play with the baby, a crucial part of the child’s schema building process, can be a PE credit and, most importantly, reading to the child, in utero and after birth can most definitely be an English credit.
Once the child is born, the family can attend school together, in the same building to have breakfast and lunch and even dinner together. By Kindergarten, a five year family relationship has been fostered and educational success for all three individuals is now more likely.
Our society will be whole again when our families are whole again.
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