Wisconsin's teen pregnancy rate is dropping thanks to several educational efforts.

According to the National Campaign to Prevent Teen Pregnancy, Wisconsin's rate dropped 32 per cent from 1991 to 2005. The group estimates a savings to the state of 97-million dollars alone in 2004.

Charity Eleson with the Wisconsin Council on Children and Families says making family planning services available to adolescent girls and better healthcare education are important but strong after school programs also are a factor. She says research shows teens who do not get involved in some extracurricular activities are 37 per cent more likely to become teen parents.

Eleson is glad to see the Department of Public Instruction include 5-million dollars in its budget for new or improved after-school programs. She says those programs do more than just keep potential teen parents busy. They build self-esteem and leadership skills as well as helping them academically.


AUDIO: Jim Dick reports ( 1:00 MP3 )

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