Pregnant Girls Still at Risk of Being Forced Out of Education
Thousands of girls who are adolescent mothers in Tanzania now have the option to study in public secondary schools, thanks to the government reversing its position and allowing adolescent mothers to return to their studies.
For decades, pregnant students and adolescent mothers have been forced to drop out of school. In 2017 Tanzania adopted a discriminatory ban that prohibited them from continuing their education in public schools and threatened to deregister nongovernmental organizations that challenged the ban.
On November 24, 2021, then-Education Minister Joyce Ndalichako announcedthat girls who had dropped out of school because of pregnancy could return to school, effective immediately. This change allows girls to re-enroll within two years of giving birth, or, if later than two years, they can enroll at an alternativeeducation center that offers a condensed version of the curriculum.
The Tanzanian government has also pledged to adopt additional measures. By June, it has agreed to publish new guidelines to provide more details on how long pregnant students can stay in school, how much time they will be allowed to be absent from school after giving birth, and the type of support they will receive when they return. Continue Reading