Klotter, Teen Parent Program Supports Kids with Kids

Uhsti%2C+Karen%2C+their+son+Junior%2C+Johnny%2C+Jannette.+Gudell%2C+Lauren%2C+Michelle+and+Darell

Uhsti, Karen, their son Junior, Johnny, Jannette. Gudell, Lauren, Michelle and Darell

Ira Buzhduga, Staff Writer

We’ve all been in a situation throughout our lives that has either affected us for the worst, or for the better.

The Teen Parent Program at CHS shows great support for pregnant girls and teen parents. Not only at the high school, but schools all over the district including CLC and the Middle School. The Program itself is not only for the girls, but for both parents. Coordinator Kristin Klotter said the primary purpose of the program is to “make sure the students know they can do whatever they set their mind to! Nothing can stop them from achieving their goals, not even a baby.”

Growing up with teen parents in her family, Klotter knows how difficult that journey can be. When her sister became a teen parent, she wanted the best for her nieces and tried to be the best aunt she could be. However, they too, became teen parents. Klotter never fully understood the whole concept, until she actually experienced family members being exposed to teen parenting, which changed her mindset and inspired her to become involved.

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Janette, Johnny and their son Jadiel.

 

Support is shown towards these students from many, however nearly all of the students say there is just as much–maybe even more–judgment and criticism. The school has on-site childcare/baby room, which they say is beneficial for those who aren’t able to find a babysitter and need the extra help. Klotter provides transportation for the parents as well as their baby, when they need to get somewhere. She also offers a parenting class. This parenting class teaches them skills they need to know, positions they need to uphold, roles they need to fulfill, but most importantly, what it is to be a parent. Donations are made to the school in order to help them, including baby clothes, baby food, diapers and wipes, changing pads, etc. Klotter believes that the most important way to show her support for these parents is to build a personal relationship. She said the young parents benefit from showing them that someone is going to be there for them, even when everyone is against you.

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Dariell, Michelle’s son.

 

 

 

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Karen and Uhsti’s son Junior.

 

 

Parts of Lauren’s  pregnancy were difficult and went into preterm labor six times and was on bed-rest for three months during her pregnancy. On August 30, she gave birth to her baby girl, Tessa. Tessa is now three months old and Lauren takes her everywhere with her! Whether it’s going shopping, hanging out with friends or running a couple of errands, she is always there. Lauren plans on graduating early in January, as well as attending Mt. Hood Community College and becoming a nurse. “My baby girl is a blessing and my happiness!”

Baby Tessa, Lauren's little girl enjoying her new Uggs!
Baby Tessa, Lauren’s little girl enjoying her new Uggs!

Kelsey, who didn’t know she was pregnant for the first three months, got pregnant had her baby girl Isabella at 17 on June 23. She lived with her boyfriend at the time and continues to do so, however his parents took the pregnancy news hard. Kelsey’s dad didn’t find out about her pregnancy until she was eight months along because she was too scared to face his reaction. The baby’s father’s parents suggested getting an abortion but that was controversial for her, because on the contrary, her parents were supportive.

She says it was a lot to take in, but they supported her financially, materialistically, and emotionally. The hardest part emotionally for Kelsey was walking down the hallways at school and seeing how much hate was being thrown at her. Kelsey, like Lauren, also plans on attending Mt. Hood Community College to become a nurse.