CALL TO IMPLEMENT COMPREHENSIVE SEXUALITY EDUCATION IN KENYAN SCHOOLS
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Kenya's demographic health survey 2014 indicates that Adolescents aged 10-19 years constitute 24% of Kenya’s population. 1 in 5 girls between 15-19 years has begun childbearing or already has a child. 13,000 teenage girls drop out of school every year due to pregnancy. Additionally, only 50% of adolescents transition to secondary school with high dropout rates, particularly for girls.
Recent media reports of the high number of girls failing to sit their final secondary school examinations (KSCE) only reveal the extent to which we have continued to overlook candid discussions about adolescent sexuality. This has often resulted in school dropout, mortality, and morbidity. According to KDHS 2014, the national average incidence of teenage pregnancies is at 18%. Narok County has the highest incidences that stand at 40%. This is followed by Homabay County at 33%. It should be noted that 20 out of the 47 Counties in Kenya have an incidence percentage rate above the national one.
Investing in sexual reproductive health and rights (SRHR) agenda for young people in schools by the ministry of education will ensure a productive segment of the population and a cohort that is able to transit into a generation that is able to support the development and economic agendas of Kenya. This is the time for all development players to think about the demographic dividend of the country.
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