Childcare for High School Moms - KLFY News 10

Childcare for High School Moms

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Lafayette Parish School System is proposing a program that would provide child care assistance and education to teen mothers.

As part of Superintendent Dr. Pat Cooper's turnaround plan, the Teen Parenthood Program would allow expecting and teen parents the opportunity to receive education, on-site child care assistance and lifestyle skills to prepare them for parenthood. After establishing the same type of program in other areas, Cooper said he is a believer in this kind of plan.

"It's just one of those areas where I feel the school district has to step in because we have access to those kids."

According to Cooper, over 90 teens drop out every year in relation to teen pregnancy. He believes more teens would graduate, and the teen pregnancy rate could drop.

Northside High will house the trial period for the 2013-2014 school year. The hope is that all high schools will adopt the program for the following school year. Northside has been chosen for its already established health care clinic and nurse assistance.

Director of Early Childhood Education, Christine Duay, will help spearhead the program along with Bradley Cruice, the Director of Health and Wellness. Duay said their biggest hurdle will be finding teen parents in the parish, as there is no database that tells them which teens are pregnant or which are parents. She said through community efforts, this program could be a win-win for everyone involved.

"In the end, we would have some healthy students, healthy young children, ready to enter school, ready to learn by the time they turn five. We'll have teen moms who are better prepared not only academically but know how to be a mom."

Cooper agreed and added, "We have to figure out how to make their lives better because it is going to make the community better. We have to figure out how to make their kids' lives better, because that is also going to make the community better."

The program will accept children as young as three weeks old. Any child older than three years will be accepted into the Pre-K and Early Childhood LA4 Program.

Lafayette Parish School System is proposing a program that would provide child care assistance and education to teen mothers.

As part of Superintendent Dr. Pat Cooper's turnaround plan, the Teen Parenthood Program would allow expecting and teen parents the opportunity to receive education, on-site child care assistance and lifestyle skills to prepare them for parenthood. After establishing the same type of program in other areas, Cooper said he is a believer in this kind of plan.

"It's just one of those areas where I feel the school district has to step in because we have access to those kids."

According to Cooper, over 90 teens drop out every year in relation to teen pregnancy. He believes more teens would graduate, and the teen pregnancy rate could drop.

Northside High will house the trial period for the 2013-2014 school year. The hope is that all high schools will adopt the program for the following school year. Northside has been chosen for its already established health care clinic and nurse assistance.

Director of Early Childhood Education, Christine Duay, will help spearhead the program along with Bradley Cruice, the Director of Health and Wellness. Duay said their biggest hurdle will be finding teen parents in the parish, as there is no database that tells them which teens are pregnant or which are parents. She said through community efforts, this program could be a win-win for everyone involved.

"In the end, we would have some healthy students, healthy young children, ready to enter school, ready to learn by the time they turn five. We'll have teen moms who are better prepared not only academically but know how to be a mom."

Cooper agreed and added, "We have to figure out how to make their lives better because it is going to make the community better. We have to figure out how to make their kids’ lives better, because that is also going to make the community better."

The program will accept children as young as three weeks old. Any child older than three years will be accepted into the Pre-K and Early Childhood LA4 Program.

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