Re-entry to School after Giving Birth: An Evaluation of the Process used to Design and Implement Policy in Zambia
The re-entry policy launched in 1997 advocates that girls who drop out of school due to pregnancy should be readmitted after giving birth. The aim of this policy is to implement measures that will help prevent the exclusion of young mothers from furthering their education. In the event of a girl being forced out of school due to pregnancy, the Ministry of Education has provided policy guidelines to assist schools and other stakeholders such as parents and guardians to ensure that the girl is enabled to complete her education. In this study, views of school administrators, civil society organisations, teachers, pupils and the church are presented. The study calls for a further shift of attention and a redistribution of energies in developing and formulating policies. Evidence from the Ministry of Education suggests that when key stakeholders are left out of the policy formulation process, little is achieved in terms of implementation. Findings in this study further shows that although the policy is perceived as a good policy, various categories of people such as the church, schools and members of parliament particularly those from opposition parties consider the policy to be someone else?s agenda influenced by the donor community. It is therefore important for future policies to take into account views of various stakeholders before policy directives are sent to schools.
Mwansa, A. Re-entry to School after Giving Birth: An Evaluation of the Process used to Design and Implement Policy in Zambia. CREATE Pathways to Access Series, Research Monograph Number 70. Centre for International Education, Department of Education, University of Sussex, Falmer, UK (2011) 44 pp. ISBN: 0-901881-83-X