Missionaries of the Sacred

Teenage Pregnancy and Education PDF Print


The relationship between teenage pregnancy and education goes in both directions. Teenagers who become pregnant are more likely to drop out of school and teenagers who drop out of school are more likely to become pregnant. Also, children of teen mothers are less likely to graduate from high school than children whose parents were older at the time of childbearing. However, educational goals can also help reduce the likelihood of teen pregnancy. For instance, planning to attend college is associated with a lower risk of teen pregnancy.

  • Only 38% of teen mothers who have a child before the age of 18 graduate from high school, compared to approximately 75% of women who delay child bearing until 20-21.11
  • Parenthood is a leading cause of dropping out of school among girls. 30% of teen girls cited pregnancy or parenthood as a reason for dropping out of high school. 
  • Woman who are 20-21 when they give birth are over 4 times as likely to have a college degree by the time they are 30 as woman who have a child before the age of 18 (9% compared to <2%).
  • 2/3 of children of teen mothers graduate high school, compared to 81% of the children of parents who were older at the time of childbearing.
  • Children of teen mothers are 50% more likely to repeat a grade as children of older parents.
  • Teenagers who drop out of school are more likely to get pregnant than their peers who stay in school.