High School Program Aims to End Teen Pregnancy

By: Elizabeth Lamb Email
By: Elizabeth Lamb Email

AUGUSTA COUNTY -- According to a nationwide study, called the Campaign to Prevent Teen and Unplanned Pregnancies, pregnancy rates are up for teenage girls who live in rural areas and down for girls in cities.

The study said the teen birth rate in rural counties is one-third higher than in cities for girls ages 15 to 19.

The Office on Youth works to prevent teen pregnancy. Employees work alongside a parenting teacher at Fort Defiance High School.

Students take home computerized babies to learn the realities of being the parent of a newborn baby. Joy Houff, a teacher at the high school, said that helps students understand the parenting experience.

“I love on Monday mornings when the students come back with the babies and they say 'Here, take this. I've had a long weekend. I haven't gotten any sleep.' Most of them don't say, 'Can I have it a little longer?' I think the Baby Think it Over program is good, because they get a dose of reality,” said Houff.

A leader with the Office on Youth said the pregnancy rate in Augusta County is lower than the state average.

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