The policy states: "If an administrator or teacher suspects a student is pregnant, a parent conference will be held. The school reserves the right to require any female student to take a pregnancy test to confirm whether or not the suspected student is in fact pregnant.
The school further reserves the right to refer the suspected student to a physician of its choice. If the test indicates that the student is pregnant, the student will not be permitted to attend classes on the campus of Delhi Charter School.
If a student is determined to be pregnant and wishes to continue to attend Delhi Charter School, the student will be required to pursue a course of home study that will be provided by the school...
Any student who is suspected of being pregnant and who refuses to submit to a pregnancy test shall be treated as a pregnant student and will be offered home study opportunities. If home study opportunities are not acceptable, the student will be counseled to seek other educational opportunities."
According to the ACLU, the policy violates Title IX of the Education Amendment of 1972, in addition to the Equal Protection Clause and Due Process Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment and “raises serious concerns of vagueness in violation of the First Amendment.”
In a letter to Delhi’s Principals Chris Broussard, Nikki Roark, and Board Chairman Albert Christman, ACLU executive director Marjorie Esman outlined violations and concerns.
“The policy violates Title IX and its implementing regulations because it excludes students from educational programs and activities on the basis of sex... in educational programs and activities, in all schools that receive federal finance assistance. Discrimination on the basis of pregnancy is a violation. While separate programs for pregnant and parenting students, such as home instruction or tutoring is permitted, the law mandates that participation in such alternative educational services must be completely voluntary and comparable to those offered to non-pregnant students.”
Esman went on to say the policy “violates the Equal Protection Clause of the U.S. Constitution, treating female student differently than male students and because it relies on impermissible sex stereotypes linked to sex, and violates the Due Process Clause by imposing an irrebuttable presumption that pregnant students are unable to continue to attend class.”
Esman requested the school suspend its current policy for the upcoming school year and called for an immediate policy revision or face legal action.
The ACLU blog notes “approximately 70 percent of teen girls who give birth leave school, due in part to illegal discrimination. Schools should be supporting pregnant and parenting teens that face numerous barriers to completing their education, not illegally excluding them from school. The ACLU’s Women’s Rights Project protects the rights of pregnant and parenting teens through advocacy, education, and litigation, working to combat the push-out of pregnant and parenting teens from school.”