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Education Needs in Tanzania


The Education (Expulsion and Exclusion of Pupils from Schools) Regulations of 2002, lists the offences which lead to expulsion and exclusion from school in Tanzania. These include school girl’s or boy’s involvement in “prostitution, immoral behaviour, entering into wedlock or committing offences against morality”. Article 2 of the Regulations defines expulsion to mean “permanent removal of a pupil from school” and exclusion means “refusal of admission or readmission of pupils from school”.


In practice, if a school girl is found to be pregnant, the school authorities will take this to be a direct and vivid evidence that the girl got involved in prostitution, immoral behaviour, committed offences against morality or entered into wedlock (the Law of Marriage Act, 1971 289 allows marriage of young girls at the age of 14 and for boys 18) and she is immediately expelled and permanently excluded from education system without being given either an opportunity to be heard or an option to continue with formal education before or after giving birth.


Others are forced to leave school because of poverty and in order to either work or care for ill family members. AIDS orphans also fall into this category, having to first take care of dying family and to then take care and provide for younger siblings whilst dealing with the stigma of their circumstances.


In 2010, the official figures state that just over 13000 (primary school) and 16300 (secondary school) children ‘dropped-out’ school due to pregnancy, inability to meet basic needs, illness, taking care of ill relatives and ‘other reasons’. According to figures by the Ministry of Education, 52,600 (primary) and 10,600 (secondary) children dropped out of school because of truancy which could have been caused for a number of reasons, including the need to work and contribute to the family income.


Human Rights Reports on Tanzania reveal violations of children rights that push them out of school, including discriminatory laws and practices. The above practice, human rights violations and the requirement to pay fees and other expenses interfere with the right of children to an education as guaranteed by Treaties and the Tanzania Children Act of 2009.


Our school seeks to promote and protect the right to education as a key socio-economic right by not only assisting in the design, build and running of the school, but by also providing scholarships to those children “permanently removed” from the education system. Working with a network of organizations to not only identify these children but to also ensure a holistic approach to each case.

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