Teen Pregnancy Prevention Programs a Waste of Time and Money
This article originally appeared in this issue of the WSR: 2016-09-07

The United States Department of Health and Human Services, Office of Adolescence Health has published on its website the evaluation of many teen pregnancy prevention programs. It contains a total of 18 evaluated applications of 11 different TPP programs, implemented by 16 different groups and evaluated by nine separate entities. (The complete lists of these groups are at the end of this article.) All of the TPP programs involved were Evidence-Based Programs (Tier 1).

STOPP reviewed this data to determine if we could spot any trends or identify any programs that claimed to be good at reducing teen pregnancy and/or teen sexual activity. Our review found that the published results, to say the least, were shocking.

Of the 18 evaluated applications of these TPP programs, the following sentence (or something very similar) was found in all of them: “There were no differences observed in this evaluation of the ______ program, implemented for two years relative to a standard school health curriculum in rates of vaginal or oral sex initiation rates by the end of 9th grade.”

Some variations of that sentence included: “Immediately after offering the nine-month [program] in recreation centers to youth ages 11 to 14, the study found no significant differences on rates of ever having sex, intentions about having sex, or intentions to use condoms or birth control relative to a work readiness program.” 

However, two implementation sites have evaluations that contained a glimmer of hope:

In one site, youth who received the program were less likely than their control group counterparts to have engaged in sexual intercourse in the 90 days prior to the survey.

Participants who were sexually inexperienced when they started the program were less likely to report engaging in sexual activity than their similarly sexually inexperienced counterparts in the control group.

Both of these evaluations also contained the damning sentence.

The net result of all this is that none of the 11 programs reduces teen sexual activity. One program actually reported that “females reported becoming pregnant at a higher rate than females receiving the alternative program.” This program was implemented by Planned Parenthood of the Great Northwest.

The program evaluations contained the amount of money that taxpayers, through the DHHS, spent on these failed programs. According to the figures given, these programs cost us, the American taxpayer, over $40 million a year!

ACTION:

We ask all our readers to do the following:

1. Read through the list of the 11 programs identified below. These programs, or a local version of them, are pushed on an unsuspecting public all across the nation. Alert your local schools and fight any attempt to put these in your schools or elsewhere in the community.

2. Contact your local elected officials and insist that all these programs lose their public funding. After all, even the DHHS’ own reports say they don’t work.

3. Pray that God will protect our children from these failed programs.

The 11 Programs include CAS Carrera; Cuidate; Your Game: Keep it Real; Reducing the Risk; Safer Sex; Seventeen Days – Teen Video Study; Teen Outreach Program; Chicago Teenage Pregnancy Prevention Initiative; It's Your Future; T.H.R.I.V.E. (Teens Helping to Reinvent Integrity, Values and Empowerment; and BART – 4 Real Health.

The 16 implementers include Children's Home and Aid Society of Illinois; Morehouse School of Medicine; Community Action Partnership Network of San Luis Obispo County, Inc. (CAPSLO) + La Alianza Hispana, Inc + Touchstone Behavioral Health; South Carolina Campaign to Prevent Teen Pregnancy; The University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston; Better Family Life + San Diego Youth Services + Youth and Family Alliance, dba LifeWorks; Knox County Health Department + County of Hennepin + Planned Parenthood of Greater Orlando; Carnegie Mellon University; Florida Department of Health; County of Hennepin; Louisiana DHH Office of Public Health; Planned Parenthood of the Great Northwest; Chicago Public Schools, District #299; City of Rochester; The Women's Clinic of Kansas City; and Louisiana Public Health Institute.

The nine evaluators include Philliber Research & Evaluation; Abt Associates; Tressa Tucker Consulting; ETR; University of Pittsburgh, Office of Child Development; University of South Florida; Louisiana DHH Office of Public Health; University of Rochester Medical Center; and The Policy & Research Group.