Virtual babies should be wakeup call to students
Sending Russellville High School students home with virtual babies may create some short term headaches for the students but it could save their lives.
A report by Save the Children found that, annually, 13 million children are born to women under age 20 worldwide. Complications of pregnancy and childbirth are the leading cause of mortality among women between the ages of 15 and 19.
Data supporting teenage pregnancy as a social issue include lower educational levels, higher rates of poverty, and other poorer "life outcomes" in children of teenage mothers.
We were all teenagers once and likely made a few decisions we would take back if we could. However, a decision made that results in the birth of a child is a major life-altering event. What the data above shows is that teenage parents are setting themselves up for a life of struggling to make ends meet. It's difficult to graduate college – or high school in many cases – with a baby on your hip or in a stroller.
Some opportunities in life won't wait. Others will.
Our local youths owe it to themselves and to their potential children to wait until they are financially, physically and emotionally able to support a family. Our thanks for our city school leaders for finding a real world attack in solving a real world problem.