Monday, 27 March 2017

A total of 193 pupils (meant to turn 9-11 years) fell pregnant between 2014 and 2016 in South Africa

A total of 193 pupils in grades 3, 4
and 5 (the grades in which one is
meant to turn nine to 11) fell
pregnant between 2014 and 2016. If
pregnant school children from
grades 6 and 7 are added, this
number increases to 1 449, reports
The Citizen .
¤
"This information should shock
every South African. Young girls,
most under the legal age of 16,
are having their futures
undermined, likely through being
taken advantage of or abused,"
said Sonja Boshoff, DA MP and
member of the portfolio
committee on basic education.

She added that the DA
would urgently submit further
parliamentary questions to find out
if these girls were under the age of
16 and, if so, whether any charges
had been instituted against those
responsible, as this would be
statutory rape.
¤
“We will also investigate whether
these girls have since returned to
school, following the birth of their
child, what support the school
and the department of basic
education have provided them to
catch up on the syllabus, and
whether counselling and other
emotional support have been
provided,” Boshoff said.

In 2014, 18 357 pupils fell pregnant,
with 15 504 in 2015, and 8 732
pupils last year.
¤
“Although the overall numbers
seem to indicate a drop in school
pregnancies, the department was
not able to provide the statistics
for Mpumalanga and KwaZulu-
Natal.
¤
“Traditionally, these two provinces
account for large numbers of
school pregnancies: a total of 6
477 in 2014, and 5 178 in 2015
combined,” Boshoff said.
“It is vital that Minister of Basic
Education Angie Motshekga
provide these missing numbers as
a matter of urgency so that a
realistic and honest assessment
can be made and solutions can be
found. These young girls cannot
be lost to the system and the
department must follow up to
ensure that they continue to
attend school,” Boshoff said.
¤
“Keeping children in school
should be our major priority if we
are to ensure that every person,
no matter the circumstances of
their birth, are able to live a life
they truly value, filled with
opportunity. This is something the
DA will continue to fight for.”

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