- Download Pregnant and Parenting Students chapter of NCWGE's Title IX at 40 report
Despite legal protection under Title IX, pregnant and parenting students often face discrimination in school, including being pushed toward separate education programs, facing inequitable absence policies, and being denied access to extracurricular activities.
Pregnant and parenting teens face many obstacles to enrolling in, attending, and succeeding in school. Without adequate support, many drop out, lowering their chances of finding employment that offers economic security. This issue affects boys as well as girls: Close to half of female dropouts and one-third of male dropouts say that becoming a parent is a factor in their decision to leave high school.
Lack of knowledge of the law is a major issue in overcoming discrimination. Measures such as training school officials to understand the rights and needs of pregnant and parenting students and tracking compliance are important for ensuring equal access to education. In addition, greater support for pregnant and parenting students—including flexible leave options and services such as child care, counseling, and tutoring—can help ensure that these students have the opportunity to succeed in school.