According to The New York Post, students at 13 high schools now have the opportunity to pick up Plan B pills through the Department of Education. And while that might not be a bad idea to some, it’s getting the screwface for the fact that students can now get the morning-after pill and more without parental consent. It seems that the less parental provisions set up to keep kids in check, the more times young women at these schools might be picking up the morning-after pill than they should.
According to The Post, nurses at the high schools can offer the Plan B pill and other oral and injectable birth control without telling parents as part of a new program. They can also receive Depo-Provera, the birth-control shot that is injected once every three months. However, parents will be informed that these changes will take effect, and if they don’t like the idea, they can opt out of it for their child. About 1 out of 2 parents have returned the opt-out sheets to ensure that they’re informed of their child’s wish to obtain birth control and Plan B pills.
The group, CATCH (Connecting Adolescents To Comprehensive Health), is behind the program in hopes of slowing the effects of teen pregnancy, which can cause many young women to drop out of school. According to the National Association of School Nurses, they couldn’t find any other school district in the country giving students Plan B pills. When a test of the program was done in just five schools last year, it was found that more than 500 students received Plan B morning-after tablets and 580 students received birth control pills, according to the Department of Health.
With the new program in place, which doesn’t require parental knowledge, students who have unprotected sex can get a test through their school to see if they’re already pregnant, and if they’re not, a prescription is issued for birth control. While some might think it’s a good idea for a child to be able to get what they need for their sexual health without a parent’s consent, an employee from one of the 13 schools that will have the program didn’t like the concept of parents being in the dark about something so serious: “We can’t give out a Tylenol without a doctor’ s order. Why should we give out hormonal preparations with far more serious possible side effects, such as blood clots and hypertension?”
I don’t think it’s a bad look to have Plan B and birth control available for students at schools, however, I think parents should be aware of when their child wants and needs to obtain these birth control methods. Not only because of possible allergic reactions and side effects, but also just because it’s a very serious issue. Why would a parent want to be kept in the dark about their child picking up Plan B on the way to lunch and having unprotected sex, when they can actually be involved and take their child through the proper steps to obtain birth control? Not a bad concept, but what goes on with a child’s body shouldn’t be just between a school staffer and the student. These kids are getting way too grown these days…
*Opening image courtesy of Shutterstock Images.
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