Bill for teen mothers to go back to school is a great idea

Kericho County MP Beatrice Kemei. She sponsored the Bill to have all teenage mothers go back to school.

A Bill, Care and Protection of Child Parents Bill 2023, is a respite for girls who have dropped out of school because of pregnancy.

The Bill sponsored by Kericho County MP Beatrice Kemei and nominated Senator Miraj Abdul Rahman is set to breathe life once again into many girls who have been condemned due to early pregnancy.

Needless to say, a country that provides free access to quality education to all its citizens is likely to stem poverty, ailments and absolute ignorance. Education is a human right and a basic need as enshrined in Chapter 4 of the Constitution. The Dakar conference of 2000 on adoption of 6 EFA (Education For All) goals called for increased access to education by all groups in society.

The Bill seeks to develop a framework for protection and care of child parents. Such children in an educational set up are categorized as children living under difficult circumstances. They, therefore, are children with special needs.

The Bill, by all means, should be supported as it will compel county governments to develop programmes that will identify and re-enroll learners who have dropped out as a result of pregnancy. County governments will further develop centres that will provide facilities for children under 3 years to enable mother learners resume learning and nurse their babies.

A recent report by the Foundation Literacy and Numeracy Assessment (Flana) supports the timing of the Bill. The report’s (March, 2023) findings show that dropouts between 6-15 years increased from 7.5 per cent to 8.5 per cent from 2021 – 2023. A total of 2.1 per cent of school-going girls dropped out in the same period as a result of pregnancy nationally.

The Bill, in its framing, seeks to turn around lost dreams of the affected girls as well as actualizing EFA goals.

It is, therefore, a clarion call to all the stakeholders to rally behind the Bill as it will see the reinvigoration of lost dreams of the affected girls. The Bill drafters should also come up with clauses that will hinder the pregnancies.

Going back to school as provided for by the Bill should also be embraced by school administrations; failure to which one will be breaching the law.

By Joseph Kiptoo

Get more stories from our website: Education News 

To write to us or offer feedback, you can reach us at: editor@educationnews.co.ke

You can also follow our social media pages on Twitter: Education News KE  and Facebook: Education News Newspaper for timely updates.

>>> Click here to stay up-to-date with trending regional stories

 

The writer is a teacher based in Sirwa, Nandi Hills

Sharing is caring!

Don`t copy text!
Education News - Newspaper Vol 281