Date of Award

Spring 5-2015

Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Education (EdD)



First Advisor

Dr. Jan Munro

Second Advisor

Dr. John Long

Third Advisor

Dr. Candance Virgil


The purpose of this study was to discover and understand the life and academic experiences of high school teenage mothers and expecting teenage mothers. The research questions was, How do these teenage mothers and expecting teenage mothers describe their life and academic experiences in a Missouri high school; What challenges do they face to successfully continuing their education; and What would they want and/or need in a high school-based child-care center if it were to be implemented as part of the high school’s intervention with this at-risk population? The study was conducted at a medium-sized Midwestern Urban High School. The researcher interviewed 16 teenage mothers and expecting teenage mothers to provide insight into the research questions. Pseudonyms were used to preserve anonymity. Interviews were conducted face-to-face. The themes that emerged from the interviews included (a) problems with child-care, (b) barriers to resources, (c) teenage mothers’ and expecting teenage mothers’ recommendations, and (d) teenage mothers’ and expecting teenage mothers’ attitude toward pregnancy. Based upon the findings in this study, several recommendations may be beneficial to the life and academic success of teenage mothers and expecting teenage mothers attending urban high schools in Missouri: The inclusion of an on-site child-care center, whether it is in an adjacent building from the school itself or in a separate section within the school, would allow this particular population to attend school daily and on time regularly; therapeutic counselors and/or social workers along with guidance counselors should also be placed in the urban high schools; based on the participants’ statements, job training and paid internships placed in the schools would prepare the young mothers for jobs upon completing high school; visits from licensed pediatricians iii and dentists are recommended in the schools to see the children on a monthly basis; and the inclusion of a father support center should be placed in the urban high schools to work with teaching males, especially those who are fathers of children by the young ladies who are attending the school also, to be fathers whether their children attend the on-site center or not.


Copyright 2015