While attending high school there are many courses that are mandatory and must be taken by all students. These courses generally include the arts, science, math and English courses. These mandatory courses are more theoretical and geared towards academic, artistic, musical or dramatic students. There should be a mandatory course that will benefit everyone, no matter how academic or artistic the student is. One course that I feel should be mandatory to all high school students is a parenting course.
Parenting should be mandatory because almost everyone will one day become a parent. Becoming a parent is one thing that almost everyone can do and it is the most important job that anyone will ever have. Becoming a parent is not based on how smart that person is, their grades in high school or if they have a post-secondary education. You don’t have to pass a course to do it, you don’t need a license and no one can stop you from becoming a parent.
If the parenting course was mandatory in every high school people would be better parents. Taking a course on raising a child makes it virtually impossible for anyone to become a parent and have absolutely no idea what to expect. The problem with parenting is that the only role models are our own parents and some parents are not the best role models. People learn from experience and other peoples’ mistakes. If a person takes the parenting course, gets some experience and realizes where their parents may have gone wrong, they will have a better chance at becoming a great parent one day.
Students should learn about the costs, benefits and responsibilities of being a parent while they are still in high school. Knowing the responsibilities and challenges of raising a child will help a person know when the time is right for them to have a child. Teenagers need to learn that having a child is not just about finding a partner and having sex. Becoming a parent is a huge responsibility and has major financial and emotional commitments.
There are so many teenage girls that get pregnant just because they are unaware of the challenges of being a parent. Teenagers need to realize that once they become a parent, that child becomes their focus and they will no longer have the same social life. A child needs constant care day and night for the first few years of life which means finishing high school is almost impossible until the child is much older. All of her time will be devoted to caring for her child. If teenagers are taught what it takes to be a parent they might make a conscious effort to not get pregnant.
I feel that a parenting class should be mandatory for all high school students. If this course was taught to everyone there might be fewer teenage pregnancies, people would know better what to expect with having children and overall people would be better parents.