Teen parents aren’t alone with Yampah program
Few people would dispute that it’s difficult to raise a child alone.And while many communities have resources available for single parents, few go as far as Yampah Mountain High School’s Teen Parent Program in ensuring that young parents in Garfield County aren’t raising their kids alone. Yampah might not have a class for the county’s young parents 10 years from now, but the school is teaching them lessons during some of the most difficult – and important – years for a single parent, and what they learn during the lessons could last much longer.People can be free with their advice, opinions and judgments for single parents, but other people’s perspectives on the appropriate age to become a parent aren’t as crucial as real-world knowledge single parents can use during their children’s formative years. So programs like Yampah’s – short in judgment and long in practical know-how – help.But the program for teenage parents goes beyond that, with child care that gives the young parents the opportunity to learn how to take care of their children, and other skills that could prove just as valuable. Yampah’s program culminates in a high school diploma, not a GED, so while some of the lessons the parents are learning will aid the development of their children, the program can also help the parents develop professionally as well.But it’s easy to laud the school for having the program. Some – if not most – of the credit should go to the teenagers who enrolled for wanting to be better parents at a young age.When you’re a teenager, it’s not easy to divide your day between academics, work and other things you need to accomplish- even without having your own child to raise. The students in Yampah’s Teen Parent Program have committed themselves to do just that, and in return have found a support network of teachers and peers.Since they found the courage to ask, none of them have to be single parents alone.Since they found the courage to ask, none of them have to be single parents alone.
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