What’s the latest controversial case the ACLU has taken on? They’re fighting for teen moms to get maternity leave from school.
The ACLU of New Mexico is petitioning high schools to create maternity leave programs which would let teenage parents have 24 excused absences per semester instead of the typical 10. So they have more time for doctors’ appointments, to recover from birth and to bond with their babies.
Statistics show that only half of teen mothers earn a high school diploma these days and ACLU lawyers say that’s because a lot of teen moms miss too much school. They’re also exhausted adjusting to midnight feedings and non-stop diaper duty. Most schools automatically require students to repeat a grade if they miss more than 10 days and a lot of teen moms who go over that limit get so overwhelmed that they drop out of school. That makes it virtually impossible for them to attend college, or apply for jobs that require a high school diploma.
But critics warn that a lot of students will consider teen maternity leave a special perk for pregnant girls and think the perk might even encourage some teens to get pregnant so they can take all that time off from school.
So, do you think teen maternity leave sounds like a perk? Or is it a practical idea so more teen moms can graduate? Post a comment at Facebook.com/JohnTesh.