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Young mother graduating high school

Posted at 7:17 PM, May 22, 2017
and last updated 2017-05-23 07:57:32-04

High school graduations are about to begin--- as high spirited students collect their diplomas and move on to the next stage of their lives.

Friends and families will be there, But this is the story of a student who made her way through high school---with her baby.

While Yulie Jackson learned the course work required to graduate she was learning something else---how to be a mother.

"At first I thought what am I gonna do, I'm pregnant, do I keep going to school, how am I gonna do this?"      

Then she learned she could go to TUSD's Teenaged Parent High School. The school gives about 70 young mothers, or mothers to be, a place to learn and a supportive atmosphere that helps them be successful students, and parents.

Yulie Jackson says,  "Compared to a regular high school you probably get judged and have mean things and probably other teachers wouldn't think you can make it because you're pregnant and you have a child but here everyone's in the same situation, same everything so you just feel more comfortable walking into the school."

Principal Dr. Anne Dudley says with a husband and supportive family Yulie Jackson has a better situation than some of her students. They may be in poverty, and may have been out of school for several years when pregnancy brings a sense of responsibility and an urge to get a high school diploma.

“A lot of them are shocked that they're pregnant.  They go through a mourning period.  They're very sad they've lost their freedom as high school students and even though they don't consciously think about it they feel like they've lost their childhood because now they're going to be responsible for somebody else.”

Yulie Jackson found a real power in knowing she must succeed for the sake of her baby.

"I feel like I can accomplish anything because I'm graduating and have a baby, I still, I feel like I can accomplish a lot more."