Skills-Universe

The following is a media release by SADTU. I'm sure that there are many educators and parents amongst our members who would like to make a contribution to this debate - how should we deal with teenage girls who become pregnant while at school? This is not a South African question alone - this is also an international question, so our international members might be able to offer us advice if they believe that their country has the correct answer. All members are invited to please contribute your views. If anyone has the HSRC research document, please upload it using the "Attach File" option. You may attach multiple files.

Nomusa Cembi, SADTU Media Officer, 1 September 2009

The South African Democratic Teachers Union (SADTU) welcomes the Minister of Basic Education’s plan to develop a comprehensive strategy towards addressing learner pregnancy in South Africa, outlining definitive interventions for implementation through the school system.

Minister Angie Motshekga announced this at the launch of a study on teenage pregnancy in schools done by the Human Sciences Research Council (HSRC).

As SADTU, we hope this strategy will bring guidance and much needed leadership to ensure uniformity as schools continue to expel pregnant learners further plunging these girls into the cycle of poverty.

“Pregnant girl learners have for far too long been made to compromise their futures when they are expelled,” Lulama Nare, SADTU Gender Officer said.

SADTU is committed to the Dakar Framework of Action for Education For All which focuses on ensuring girls have equal and full access to and achieving of basic education.

SADTU would also welcome the broader participation of stakeholders inclusive of school managers, governing bodies, learners and teacher organizations. We would also urge the department to look into the availability of school nursing, provision of career guidance and counselors in schools as teachers are not equipped to deal with pregnant learners.

The HSRC study found, among other things, that it was crucial for the learners to return to schools without much delay after giving birth so as to increase their chances of completing their studies.

The longer they stayed at home after giving birth, the lesser their chances of completing their studies.

Tags: Basic, Dakar, Education, Framework, HSRC, SADTU, pregnancy, schoolgirl, teenage

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Hi Sylvia

I tend to differ but i wont comment much as i havent read the whole document . The idea of these kids being allowed to school, actuall attending classes while pregnant sounds and is morally wrong to me. I think (personally) that they should take responsibility for their action and suffer the consequences. In schools nowadays there are programmes that teaches about unprotected sex,condoms, HIV/AIDS irregardless of all those efforts they still get pregnant and risks their lives and an opportunity to have better lives and eradicate poverty in their families and communities

On the issue of giving birth and then going back to school, as long as the child is taken care of i dont forsee a problem. we have living examples in our villages of people who have given birth and went back to school and made a success of themselves. All it takes is a dedication and commitmnt and knowing what you want to achieve.

Lets not promote the issue of being pregnant in schools and dumping all those problems to the poor teachers at school .

I stand for correction , its only my thoughts and views .

Regards
Neli
Hi Sylvia

I agree with Nelisiwe, pregnant girls shouldn't be allowed at school, period. Let them stay at home, take some kind of responsibility. Letting them stay at school will be showing others it's okay to be pregnant(which is an adult thing) and still be treated like a child.

While i was still at Technikon, one of my fellow students gave birth in the bathroom in the full view of all resident students. We were all older than 18yrs but we were traumatised, imagine if something like that was to happen at school. Parents should also play their part, they must report these pregnancies as other children don't show until it's late.

Just sharing my views.

Regards
Odwa

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