I was shocked and saddened to stumble across this news story. 90 teenage girls, roughly 20% of Frayser High School's female population, is pregnant or has given birth during the last school year. Speculators assume that many of these girls are making pacts with each other and planning ways to get pregnant. Because so many girls are pregnant or are taking care of little babies, it is seen as "cool" to be able to join this club.
The girl interviewed in the video above did not find out she was pregnant until she was 5 months along. This can pose some serious health risks to her and the baby, due to lack of prenatal care.
So many schools just glaze over sex education. They speed through it because it's uncomfortable to teach, immature kids giggle and make jokes, and no one seems to take it seriously.
However, now there are close to 100 babies being born to teenagers in this one school alone.
While I would hope that teenage girls will practice abstinence, obviously not every girl is going to. Our schools need to get over the shock factor that teens have sex and begin teaching them how to prevent pregnancies. Turning a blind eye to what is going on doesn't do anybody any favors.
And it isn't just the school district's responsibility to educate these teens. Parents need to step up and teach their children that their actions have very serious consequences. What was intended to be only one night of fun can turn into a lifetime of responsibility. 14, 15, 16, 17, and even most 18 year olds are not ready to handle that type of commitment.
The good news is that teen births are down in most places in the US. This article provides some current statistics.
Shows like "Teen Mom" and "16 and Pregnant" do a great job of demonstrating the realities of getting pregnant at a young age. Their "Prince Charming" isn't quite so charming anymore. Being pregnant is more than just uncomfortable at times. And once the baby arrives, life changes forever.
I know I don't have all the answers. But something is happening in Memphis at Frayser High School. Somewhere along the line these girls are getting the wrong message. Something needs to be done to wake these girls, and boys, up. Because the reality is that children are not meant to have children.
Do you have any ideas? What do you think should be done to stop this teen pregnancy epidemic at Frayser High School?