Education

Pregnant girls and boys who impregnate them forced to attend vocational schools

“Any school girl who has been a victim of pregnancy or was forced to get married while she was still studying at the basic or post-basic school is not allowed to return to the formal public or private education system,” reads a note issued on 26 June by the Minister of Education, Technical and Vocational Training, Janvière Ndirahisha.

Janvière Ndirahisha "Girls who have been impregnated are not allowed to return to the formal education system"

Janvière Ndirahisha “Girls who have been impregnated are not allowed to return to the formal education system”

Boys who make them pregnant are also concerned by this measure. Nevertheless, they will be able to attend trade schools or vocational training.

The decision taken by Minister Ndirahisha does not win unanimous support. For the group Education for All “Bafashe Bige”, the measure aims to discriminate some children. “Being pregnant has nothing to do with children’s intelligence capacity,” explains Jean Samandari, Legal representative of ‘Bafashe Bige’ association. “We have many examples of students who succeeded at school after they have given birth to babies,” says Samandari.

“No one should limit a child’s choice of orientation. Everyone has the right to attend a school of their choice” says the activist pleading for access to education for all. He calls on the minister to suspend this measure which, according to him, limits access to education for the Burundian youth.

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