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UNESCO HIV and Health Education Clearinghouse

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  1. Exploring experiences of pregnant and mothering secondary school students in Tanzania

    The Constitution of Tanzania grants every child the right to education, yet a girl’s access to education is denied when she becomes pregnant or gives birth. This study explored the experiences of pregnant and mothering students in secondary schools and the community awareness, attitudes and perceptions toward pregnancy policy in Tanzania. It sought insights into parenting students’ challenges, coping strategies, and their suggestions on how to help teen mothers who are returning to school. …

  2. National policy reintegration of school-age mothers into the formal school system

    Pregnancy remains the highest risk factor for female dropout rates, both before and after reintegration. This does not align with national policy goals outlined in the Vision 2030 document, and retards Jamaica’s fulfilment of international treaties, commitments and policy guidelines. This policy purports to address this deficit, and establishes a framework for inter-agency collaboration to address the wider issues that limit the reintegration of school-age mothers into the formal school system.

  3. An assessment of the implementation of the re-entry policy for girls in Swaziland: school practices and implications for policy development

    Swaziland has no stand-alone re-entry policy. Practices vary from school to school, but generally a pregnant adolescent girl has to drop out of school although those who become pregnant may be allowed to return to write their exams at the same school or they may be advised to find another examination centre. …

  4. Factors associated with teenage pregnancy in the European Union countries: a systematic review

    Background: As part of the REPROSTAT2 project, this systematic review aimed to identify factors associated with teenage pregnancy in 25 European Union countries.Methods: The search strategy included electronic bibliographic databases (1995 to May 2005), bibliographies of selected articles and requests to all country representatives of the research team for relevant reports and publications. Primary outcome measure was conception. Inclusion criteria were quantitative studies of individual-level factors associated with teenage (13–19 years) pregnancy in EU countries. …

  5. FAWE Zambia’s campaign for an enabling readmission policy for adolescent mothers

    This booklet traces the evolution of the re-entry policy in Zambia and emphasizes the seriousness of having in place clear guidelines and a tracking and monitoring system for its implementation. While many countries now recognize the importance of giving adolescent mothers a second chance to continue with their education and pave a future for themselves, only a handful have re-entry policies in place. And among those who have, many have failed to systematically monitor the impact of the policy. …

  6. Girls’ education in South Africa: special consideration to teen mothers as learners

    Teenage pregnancy has militated against the educational success of girls in South Africa. Statistics show that four out of ten girls become pregnant overall at least once before age 20. Education is important for these girls in order to break the poverty cycle in which most of them are trapped. Though the girls are allowed to return to school after becoming mothers, they face many challenges in trying to balance motherhood and the demands of schooling. The aim of this study was to find out how teen mothers cope with schooling, hence how much support is rendered to them. …

  7. De-stigmatizing teenage motherhood: towards achievement of universal basic education in Kenya

    Teenage motherhood is a situation in which a girl in teenage years, that is, 13-19 years is a mother or has a child. Globally, a third of teenage mothers live in India whereas the least affected country by teenage motherhood in the world is Japan. In Africa, it is estimated that approximately 5.5 million girls between 15-19 years are mothers .Of these 62% live in Sub Saharan Africa. In Kenya, 13,000 girls leave school every year due to teenage pregnancy. …

  8. Teen mothers and schooling: lacunae and challenges

    While many girls who become mothers before completing schooling consider academic qualifications to be very important, they may not be able to succeed academically if the support they need to complete their studies is insufficient. Usually, instead of getting support, the teen mothers endure misunderstandings and pressure. The teen mothers may feel disempowered because they are ‘othered’ and consequently, they develop forms of resistance which in most cases may foster their failure as learners. …

  9. Early adolescent pregnancy increases risk of incident HIV infection in the Eastern Cape, South Africa: a longitudinal study

    INTRODUCTION: Adolescents having unprotected heterosexual intercourse are at risk of HIV infection and unwanted pregnancy. However, there is little evidence to indicate whether pregnancy in early adolescence increases the risk of subsequent HIV infection. In this paper, we tested the hypothesis that adolescent pregnancy (aged 15 or younger) increases the risk of incident HIV infection in young South African women. …

  10. I want to study with all my heart: Unpacking reasons for girls' school drop-out in West Nile, Uganda

    From 2013 to 2014 ICRW and the Forum for African Women Educationalists Uganda (FAWEU) partnered to answer several questions about girls’ education in two districts in the West Nile sub-region of Northwestern Uganda: What percentage of adolescent girls (14-18) have dropped out of school? How much of girls’ drop-out could be explained by pregnancy? To what extent are gendered social norms and the effects of conflict influencing pregnancy and drop-out? …

  11. Unintended pregnancy and abortion in Uganda

    Unintended pregnancy is common in Uganda, leading to high levels of unplanned births, unsafe abortions, and maternal injury and death. Because most pregnancies that end in abortion are unwanted, nearly all ill health and mortality resulting from unsafe abortion is preventable. This report summarizes evidence on the context and consequences of unintended pregnancy and unsafe abortion in Uganda, points out gaps in knowledge, and highlights steps that can be taken to reduce levels of unintended pregnancy and unsafe abortion, and, in turn, the high level of maternal mortality.

  12. Books and babies. Pregnancy and young parents in schools

    Being pregnant and a young parent in South African schools is not easy. Books and Babies examines why this is the case. Drawing on both quantitative and qualitative research conducted in secondary schools in Durban and Cape Town, the book explores how teachers and principals respond to the presence of pregnant learners and young parents in school, and surveys the attitudes of fellow learners towards them. …

  13. Let girls be girls, not mothers! National strategy for the reduction of teenage pregnancy (2013-2015)

    The approach of this strategy follows a twin-track strategy which will intervene at two levels: At the policy level, partners of the programme aim at reviewing existing policies and legal documents or at developing new instruments to protect adolescents and young people's rights and guarantee their access to SRHR information and services; at the community level, partners are mobilized to reduce early childbearing and teenage pregnancy through improved access to SRHR services for young people, comprehensive education on early childbearing and teenage pregnancy and SRHR in general as well as thr …

  14. Education, HIV, and early fertility: experimental evidence from Kenya

    We provide experimental evidence on the relationships between education, HIV/AIDS education, risky behavior and early fertility in Kenya. We exploit randomly assigned variation in the cost of schooling and in exposure to the national HIV/AIDS prevention curriculum for a cohort of over 19,000 adolescents in Western Kenya, originally aged 13.5 on average. We collected data on the schooling, marriage, and fertility out-comes of these students over 7 years, and tested them for HIV and Herpes (HSV2) after 7 years. …

  15. A review of teenage pregnancy in South Africa – experiences of schooling, and knowledge and access to sexual and reproductive health services

    Approximately 30% of teenagers in South Africa report ‘ever having been pregnant’, the majority, unplanned. While this number has decreased over the past few decades, it is still unacceptably high. The figure is for all teenagers. (13-19 years old), but motherhood for an 18 or 19 year old has very different implications than for a young teenager, one aged 15, for example. Therefore this report tries, where possible, to be mindful of differing experiences of pregnancy and motherhood across the teen years. …

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