Rate of school pregnancy worries Kagera authorities
At least 13 School girls in Muleba District, who were expected to sit for the National Form Four examinations last year, failed to do so due to early pregnancy. Muleba District Education Officer (Secondary) Gerald Muhile said that in total, 42 schoolgirls had failed to sit for the exams, out of the number, 23 girls dropped out of school due to truancy, 13 due to early pregnancy, while Six others dropped out of school due to illness. “We are closely making a follow-up. The culprits are expected to be taken to police stations,” he said.
Tanzania has high teenage pregnancy, according to a survey conducted by the Ministry of Education, Science and Technology, more than 16,000 school girls dropped out of school from 2008 to 2010 due to pregnancy. In Tanzania pregnancy is one of the major reasons for school dropout among teenage girls. in 2007, pregnancy accounted for 21.9 per cent of secondary school dropouts.
Mtwara is one of the leading regions for teenage pregnancy in the country. Statistics show that school dropouts caused by pregnancy have increased from 5.2 per cent in 2003 to 21.9 percent in 2007.
Social-cultural reasons for teen pregnancy are, among other things, poor parental monitoring, pressure from peer groups and moral decadence. Teenage pregnancy is due to unprotected and early sexual intercourse which also exposes teenagers to sexual transmitted infections (STDs) such as HIV/Aids. Preventing teenagers from premarital sex is a very important intervention in adolescent sexuality.
Sexual education among schoolgirls and boys is important so that these young adults grow up knowing what they are supposed to do and not to do. Programmes targeting attitudes and social norms that instill sexual abstinence in the youth should be encouraged. Emphasis on secondary school students is vital. Nevertheless, educational programmes that promote sexuality education to teenagers are highly encouraged.
source: Daily News Newspaper