School forces girls to get pregnancy tests
There's a public school in Louisiana that forces its female students to get pregnancy tests if they suspect they might be expecting. If a girl refuses or if she happens to be pregnant, she is kicked out and forced to be home schooled. Can this really be happening in the United States of America? I find it impossible to believe and yet this is the written policy at Delhi Charter School in Delhi, Louisiana.
Outraged by this blatant discriminatory and illegal policy, the American Civil Liberties Union is demanding the school suspend it immediately or face legal action.
According to the policy manual posted on the school's website:
If an administrator or teacher suspects a student is pregnant, a parent conference will be held. The school reserves the right to require any female student to take a pregnancy test to confirm whether or not the suspected student is in fact pregnant. The school further reserves the right to refer the suspected student to a physician of its choice. If the test indicates that the student is pregnant, the student will not be permitted to attend classes on the campus of Delhi Charter School.
Read more in ¿Qué más?: Why does the US have such a high rate of teen pregnancy?
I honestly find it very hard to believe that this school would actually go as far as putting in writing such a draconian policy which is not only obsolete, but sexist as it only targets and punishes girls for having sex while completely letting boys off the hook.
And what about what a policy like this one does to a pregnant teenager and her possibilities of continuing her education? Instead of deterring teen pregnancy, this policy ostracizes young women and pretty much pushes them to drop out of school at a time when support in all its forms is what they most need. Especially considering that pregnancy is already one of the leading causes for girls to drop out of school, according to the National Center for Educational Statistics.
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The worst part is that although the school's principal told the New York Daily News they've reviewing the policy with a local law firm to make sure it's in "full compliance with the constitutional law," he also said they've never had any complaints from students or parents regarding the policy. So, is he saying that it's okay for them to have an illegal policy because nobody has ever complained about it? I hope not because that would be simply ridiculous.
What do you think about this policy? What do you think will end up happening with this case? Share your thoughts with us by leaving us a comment below.
Image via Fred Jala/flickr