Magoha: Unease over teenage pregnancies at exams time
Education Cabinet Secretary, Prof George Magoha has directed field officers to work with health facilities and National Hospital Insurance Fund (NHIF) to ensure pregnant teenagers receive every possible assistance required.
The CS said teenagers who need medical help during examinations should be assisted via mobile clinics under the NHIF Edu Afya Insurance Scheme for Secondary Schools to avoid being caught unawares during this year’s exercise.
Magoha expressed concern over the magnitude of the problem of teenage pregnancies experienced during the national examinations, both in primary and secondary schools.
“Preliminary reports from county dialogues on Competency-Based Curriculum (CBC) have provided the ministry with an opportunity tackle teenage pregnancies and early marriages,” he said.
The CS spoke at Nairobi Primary School during the final county education quality dialogue on CBC in Nairobi, having held the same for 46 other counties two weeks ago.
“The number of reported cases of teenage pregnancies, especially at the Coast and some parts of the Rift Valley, remains relatively high. This is a multi-sectoral problem that we must confront jointly to ensure we bring to an end,” said Magoha.
The high cases of teenage pregnancies were brought to the fore during last year’s national examination, with tens of of Kenya Certificate of Primary Education (KCPE) students having babies during the exam period.
Kilifi Children’s Department, for instance, reported that at least 13,624 cases in the county last year among students aged between 15 and 19.
Meanwhile, he said preparations for national exams have been completed and potential hot spot areas for cheating mapped out.
“I will be visiting Migori county where they cheated as a bloc and results for over 20 schools were nullified last year. I will confront them since we know how they have been cheating,” warned the CS.
At the same time, the CS raised concerns over the growing cases of drug and substance abuse among school going children, attributing the situation to absentee parents and asked them to find ample time to counsel them.