The Africa Education Watch (Eduwatch) has advised the government of Ghana to carry out a nationwide campaign to help pregnant girls return to school after delivery.

Eduwatch Executive Director Kofi Asare suggested in a statement that the Ministry of Gender, Children, and Social Protection, Ministry of Education, Ghana Education Service and CSOs should lead the get-back-to-school campaign.

Development Diaries understands that the average girl in Ghana only receives four years of education as early marriage, pregnancy, poverty, and sexual harassment force girls to drop out of school before the end of junior high.

Also, many Ghanaian girls have experienced sexual violence during their time at school. According to ActionAid, 26 percent of girls in the country’s schools have reported sexual violence during their education.

In July 2018, ten female students reported sexual violence against eight teachers at a high school in Ghana, with only four indicted for their crimes.

Asare said the Ministry of Education should harmonise the free senior high school admission system to allow school heads to re-admit students, especially pregnant girls after delivery.

The Eduwatch boss called on the government to consider the re-entry of pregnant girls as the government prepares to take decisions on re-opening of schools after a long break due to the outbreak of the Covid-19 pandemic.

The organisation noted that the prolonged school closure could affect new enrolment as over 400,000 children were out of basic school.

The statement said the school closure also harmed students, especially girl’s re-enrolment, due to teenage pregnancy, child marriage, and child labour.

It noted that about 1.2 million households in the country were without electricity and due to school closure, children in such households had limited or no access to virtual learning opportunities.

Source: News Ghana

Photo source: UNICEF

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