High School Celebrates Pregnant Seniors, Parents Are Pissed
An Arizona high school devoted two pages of this year’s year book to students who are expecting babies. Parents are pissed, because everyone knows that ignoring things like teen pregnancy makes them go away. Also, teenagers who are expecting children and still managing to graduate high school shouldn’t be celebrated at all.
Principal Jim Souder spent yesterday fielding calls from parents who didn’t understand or like including pregnant students next to students who are being celebrated for achievements. A spokeswoman for the school district seems to agree with them:
Mesa Public Schools spokeswoman Helen Hollands said the photos are not what the school district expects from high school yearbooks.
“A yearbook is to commemorate the achievements of the students, particularly the senior class,” she said. “Probably this would not fall into that category.”
A two-page spread devoted to seniors expecting babies would have been awesome birth control for me. That was the last thing I wanted when I was coming so close to finally having some freedom. I was thinking about college, my own apartment, college and my own apartment. Oh, also not having to nightly answer to my parents.
I understand parents not being thrilled with the idea of teen pregnancy – I’m not either. But a better way to handle your discomfort with the topic is to make sure the schools your children are attending have the best sex education possible. Talking to your kids is important, too. If anything, those pages are a teaching moment for parents and their children.
As far as students expecting children not falling into the “category” of students with other achievements – that is grossly unfair. Being able to navigate graduating high school while pregnant is a huge achievement in my book. Why shame these students? It’s already happened, they’re expectant parents. Shaming them and attempting to hide them after-the-fact is archaic. They are part of the student body, too, and have every right to be included.