Northern NSW has the fourth-highest rate of teenage pregnancies in NSW.
Northern NSW has the fourth-highest rate of teenage pregnancies in NSW. Lisa Williams

Region has high teen birth rate

NORTHERN NSW has the fourth-highest rate of teenage pregnancies of the 15 NSW local health districts.

The latest NSW Health and Babies Report shows the proportion of women giving birth at less than 20 years varies from 0.5% in the Northern Sydney to 11.9% in the Far West.

The proportion in the Northern NSW LHD is 6.1%, the fourth-highest rate.

Second-highest was Western NSW with 7.9% and third-highest was Mid-North Coast at 7.6%.

Public high schools did not wish to participate in this story but a Department of Education spokesman provided an outline of steps taken by schools to increase understanding of the consequences of unsafe sex.

"Sexual health education is taught in NSW government schools in an age-appropriate way as part of the NSW Board of Studies' Personal Development, Health and Physical Education syllabus," the spokesman said. "PDHPE is mandatory from Kindergarten to Year 10.

"Years 11 and 12 students completed a course focused on personal and social issues facing young people.

Counsellors, year advisers, welfare staff and others were available to counsel and support students' about issues relating to relationships, sexual health and parenting."



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