Positive interactions with faculty encourage single mother persistence and create a sense of belonging. Below are recommendations specific to expecting and parenting students from faculty members.
Familiarize yourself with pregnant and parenting student rights under Title IX and actively uphold those rights.
Provide students opportunities to let you know they are expecting or parenting in a format that makes them feel safe and not spotlighted like a beginning of class student questionnaire.
Do not make assumptions about a student’s academic goals or capabilities based on their expecting or parenting status. Instead follow their lead and be supportive.
Before assigning requirements that take place outside of the normal class time and location, consider barriers parenting students may face like lack of childcare, work conflicts, transportation issues, and financial burden.
When assigning group projects contemplate allowing students to match themselves based on availability, preference to work remotely versus in-person, and other similar characteristics. Additionally, consider building time into class for group work to ease barriers associated with out-of-class assignments.
Allow flexibility for expecting students, permitting them to turn assignments in early if that is beneficial for them given their due date.
Offer virtual office hours with times during "lunch hour", evenings, or weekends when working students can access support
Morehouse College Professor of Mathematics Dr. Nathan Alexander holding student's baby during class.
Morehouse College professor holds student's baby so he can take notes. (2019, March 4). ABC News. Retrieved from https://abc13.com/society/college-professor-holds-students-baby-so-he-can-take-notes/5166669/
Mercado-Lopez, L.M. (2018, November 30). How faculty can help student parents succeed. Inside Higher Ed.
Peterson, S. (2016). Community college student-parents: Priorities for persistence. Community College Journal of
Research and Practice, 40(5), 370-384. Retrieved from
Picot, S.J.F. (1985). Helping the pregnant student stay in school. Journal of Nursing Education, 24(4), 158-161.
Threlfall, P. (2017, April 16). Students can be parents, too. The Chronicle of Higher Education.
Zeiger, D. M. (2019, March 26). How not to react to your pregnant student. The Chronicle of Higher Education.
Syllabus Suggestions - reflect promising pedagogy in your syllabus
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