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Jun 13, 2019

Stakeholders Discuss Challenges Affecting Girls

A national consultation to address challenges to girls’ education was held today at the Belize Institute of Management in Belize City. Private and public sector stakeholders gathered to look at the issues surrounding adolescent girls not being inside of the classrooms and the social issues affecting them. The process was triggered by a recent out-of-school survey that showed that young girls are displaced from the classrooms and fall victim of teenage pregnancy.  The consultation is being facilitated by Child Development Foundation and Executive Director Diana Shaw tells us more.

 

Diana Shaw

Diana Shaw, Executive Director, Child Development Foundation

“The statistics are worst for secondary level education than for primary level education, but it is showing that a significant portion of our young people are not getting the education that they need to be productive in the future and to adequately support national development. It is particularly concerning for us when it comes to girls because we know that there are a number of cultural issues and traditional issues that have impeded girls’ education where we still have pockets in the country where people believe that it is more important to educate the boy than the girl because the boy is more likely to support the development of the family. And then we still have issues like gender based violence and pregnancy issues that affect girls much more than boys; when there is a pregnancy, the girl is the one that is usually affected in being expelled from school. And in many cases even if the father is a teenager, the school may not know who he is and may not take action against him. There are some schools that have policies that affect both the mother and the father, but most of them it’s just the girl who would be affected. So we are looking at that to see if we need to have a national conversation about having a different approach that will better support national development.”


Viewers please note: This Internet newscast is a verbatim transcript of our evening television newscast. Where speakers use Kriol, we attempt to faithfully reproduce the quotes using a standard spelling system.

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