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  Perspective
KBSI Perspective
In 1970, I was teaching in a large urban high school in Toledo, Ohio.  In one of my classes, nine of 13 girls became pregnant in the school year.  That one shocked me at the time, but looking back now, 1970 was the peak year in the country for teen-age births totaling 644,708.  That number only covers girls from 15-19.  Move up to 2013 and there is good news with teen births dropping 10% from 2012.  274,641 girls gave birth, the lowest since the Center for Health Statistics started tracking data from all states back in 1933.  An executive from the National Campaign to Prevent Teen and Unplanned Pregnancy says the drop, “…has gone from extraordinary to almost unbelievable.  The historic decline has been driven by the magic formula of less sex and more contraception.”  We have a long way to go, however, as the United States is now at 26.6 births per 1000 teen girls.  All of Western Europe is in the single digits.  We average 5.5 times more teen births than Europe. It should be noted that women between 20-24 also hit a record low in births and unmarried women between 15-44 also dropped one percent.  That, of course, includes the drop in teen births.  It was a tough year for me in 1970 when those nine girls in that one class dropped out.  Let’s give some credit to the schools which seem to be doing the right things to help correct the problem. Parents, remember you still are the most important key to success for pregnancy prevention.
Drop In Teen Birth Rates

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