In his first public statement since the controversy erupted earlier this month, Gloucester High School principal Joseph Sullivan said he does not specifically remember using the word "pact" but does not dispute it.
He said a reporter from Time magazine asked him whether access to birth control through the school's health center would have prevented the spike in pregnancies - 17 last year, compared with the typical four.
"I told her no, because my sources had informed me that a significant number of the pregnancies, especially among the younger students, were the result of deliberate and intentional behavior," Sullivan said.
The principal said his only direct source of information about the intentional pregnancies was the former nurse practitioner at the health center. He said he also heard "verbal staff reports and student/staff chatter."
"I believe everything I told (Time) was and is accurate," he said.
In May, the two top officials at the school's health center resigned in a dispute over distribution of contraceptives. Dr. Brian Orr, medical director, and chief nurse practitioner Kim Daly supported confidentially giving contraceptives to students, but the hospital that funds the school clinic objected.
Daly did not immediately return a call seeking comment Thursday.
Sullivan said he had been asked by school officials in the fishing community 30 miles (48 kilometers) north of Boston not to speak publicly. But he said he issued the three-page statement Thursday "to put to rest the notion that I am 'foggy in my memory' or that when pressed, 'my memory failed."'
He was referring to comments by Mayor Carolyn Kirk, who has said that there is no evidence of such a pact and that Sullivan could not remember the source of his information. Sullivan said he has had no direct conversation with the mayor since the first Time story June 11.
Kirk declined Thursday to address Sullivan's statement, but she defended her own response to the controversy.
"Teenagers in Gloucester are being hunted down by the national and even international media," she said. "And if I had to do it again, I would still stand up and protect the privacy of the families and defend the city against the sensationalized and unsubstantiated reports."
The school superintendent, Christopher Farmer, did not immediately respond to an e-mail or a phone message left at his office.
Sullivan's statement was first reported in the online version of his hometown newspaper, the Gloucester Daily Times, and the principal's attorney confirmed its accuracy to The Associated Press.
Sullivan called on the "affected children" to be left alone "to deal with the consequences of their actions."
"Intense media attention needs to come to a stop, as it distorts the reality of the situation by focusing attention on the sources of information about the problem of 'children having children' instead of seeking solutions to the problem itself," he said.