Giving Compass' Take:

The principal of a Columbia Heights high school created the Bell Teen Parent and Child Development Center, located inside the school, offering accessible childcare to teen mothers attending that high school.

Why is it important that teen mothers feel supported by their schools? In what other ways can schools provide assistance?

Read about the daily challenges that young parents face.


Inside a high school in the Columbia Heights neighborhood, down several hallways lined with student artwork and college acceptance letters, is a doorway marked “day care.”

Flanked by two baby cribs, the door itself is covered with laminated guides promoting breastfeeding—one in English, another in Spanish—and behind it is a 3,360-square-foot, multi-room center filled with personalized cubbies, half a dozen cribs, baby bouncers, play sets, early learning tools and a pumping station.

The Bell Teen Parent and Child Development Center, housed in the high school wing of the Columbia Heights Education Campus (CHEC), accommodates 44 infants and toddlers, from six weeks to 3.5 years old.

Today, the parents of those children are a combination of high school students at CHEC—who get to take advantage of the facility at no cost—and teachers, staff and community members, who pay for the service.

The dramatic decline in pregnant and parenting students at this bilingual high school did not happen by chance. In 1993, the school launched a coordinated, concentrated effort to curb teen pregnancy and to ensure that it was prepared to support any students who did become pregnant before graduating.

Read the full article about on site childcare for teen mothers in high school by Emily Tate at EdSurge.