Shocking child pregnancy stats

2013-10-06 12:37

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Pretoria - The Annual Schools Survey by the Department of Basic Education has left children’s organisations shocked over new figures showing girls as young as eight are falling pregnant.

According to the Sunday Times, the survey found that 582 girls between the ages of eight and 14 fell pregnant in 2010. They were among 36 702 school girls to fall pregnant.

The highest school-girl pregnancy rate was in KwaZulu-Natal with 14 340 recorded gymslip moms.

Jackie Schoeman, CEO of Cotlands, an NGO that provides early-learning opportunities to vulnerable children said the high number of child pregnancies were as a result of poverty and either single or no-parent households.

However, Joan van Niekerk, manager of Childline’s national office, attributed the shocking statistics to sexual abuse in the home.

Comparison to previous survey

The overall number of pregnant schoolgirls noted in the survey has decreased since the Department of Basic Education's previous annual surveys for ordinary schools results were released. Those stats showed that 45 276 schoolgirls were pregnant in 2009.

KwaZulu-Natal had the highest learner pregnancy rate in that year too, followed by Limpopo. The lowest rates reported in 2009 were in Northern Cape and North West province.

In the 2009 statistics there were over 100 girls in Grade 3 who had reportedly fallen pregnant.

Read more on:    education

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