Target: Delhi Charter School in Louisiana
Goal: Urge Delhi Charter School to revoke its policy requiring female students to take pregnancy tests on-demand.
The Delhi Charter School has instituted a policy called the Student Pregnancy Policy which grants it the right to require that female students take a pregnancy test if suspected to be pregnant by a member of their staff. Students found pregnant or who refuse to submit to a pregnancy test will no longer be allowed to attend classes on campus.
Although this policy is both illegal and discriminatory—consequences for male students are virtually non-existent while their female peers risk expulsion and public scrutiny—the school claims it exists to maintain an environment consistent with its high standards. However, the Delhi Charter School is ultimately choosing to protect its image over the welfare of its students; it is eschewing its responsibility as an educational institution in favor of this superficial policy.
Ideally schools should focus on preventing and minimizing the rates of student pregnancy through sex education and counseling. They should be sensitive to the fact that teenagers who do become pregnant are already at a disadvantage both socially and educationally, and the last thing they need is to be isolated or demonized.
By signing the petition below, you will be putting a stop to a policy that encourages active discrimination against female students and violates their right to privacy and public education.
Dear Delhi Charter School,
Your Student Pregnancy Policy is inconsistent with your goal of creating an environment that promotes character development in your students and reflects your high standards.
This policy violates students’ privacy, discriminates against your female students while overlooking irresponsible behavior in your male students, and sends the message that public appearance takes priority over the welfare and education of your students; above all else, it is ineffective.
I urge you to examine the long-term consequences and implications of this policy, and consider taking a more proactive stand against teen pregnancy through increased sexual education and other prevention strategies. Rather than fear of punishment, please make support and education your first priority when it comes to your students.
[Your name here]
Photo credit: mahalie via flikr