Mbabane: Former Swaziland National Association of Teachers (SNAT) President, Sibongile Mazibuko has suggested a Sabbatical Leave for pupil mothers to allow them to recover while also bonding with their new born babies.
Mazibuko was talking to the Independent News amidst government’s directive to return even pregnant pupils to class and allow them to finish their syllabus and sit for their exams.
“The learners should be given a leave for at least six months to one year to nurse their babies, during which time the mother will also take shape,” said Mazibuko, adding that the mother’s body is often dislocated more-so if she has been operated on.
She said it is not possible to give birth and return to school the following day all due to health reasons. After the Sabbatical Leave the mother can then go back to class and in that event the state should finance that student for that academic year as she would be repeating the same class, opined Mazibuko.
She stated that while debating the issue of pregnancies in schools it should also be noted that the life of new born is as important as the mother’s, who bears the need to consider her future.
On another note, the former SNAT president suggested that the ministry of education considers conducting student workshops to get the rest of the learners to accept students’ pregnancies.
“Workshops should be done to the schools to acclimatize the rest of the students to prepare them for such an eventuality,” said the former schools’ association president.
She said as it is the pregnant students will withdraw from attending classes due to the fear of mockery.
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