Condoms in schools

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Condoms in schools: Dept explains its response to teen pregnancy crisis

The Department of Education has taken action against rising teenage pregnancies. A decision has been made to roll out condoms in schools.

Condoms in schools

Image by Flickr

As reported on Wednesday 8 September, the country has seen an alarming rise in teenage pregnancies during the COVID-19 pandemic. This has prompted the education department to introduce condoms in schools.

Condoms in schools are to be introduced in the form of vending machines, Basic Education’s deputy director-general Granville Whittle told Parliament on Tuesday 7 September 2021.

“We don’t deny services to boys coming forward to say they want access to services. We provide testing for HIV and condom distribution for boys when they come and ask for them,” he said as cited by TimesLIVE.


“Schools are being encouraged to report pregnancy, particularly those involving children under 14 because that’s rape,” Whittle added

The Northern Cape is the most affected, followed by the Eastern Cape, KwaZulu-Natal, and Mpumalanga as the leading areas of major concern.

According to data from the Department of Health, 132 612 girls aged 15 to 19 were pregnant in 2020 and going into 2021, an additional 35 209 fell pregnant between January and March.


Alarmingly 3,774 girls aged 10-14 years fell pregnant in 2020, as well 1,053 more from January to March this year. The deputy minister of Basic Education, Reginah Mhaule said, “We are responsible for these learners eight hours a day. All the other hours they are at home and most of the time they get pregnant in the society, not at school.”

“We can come up with mechanisms of fighting HIV but of fighting pregnancy it may not be easy, because even if you can teach them at that age to condomise, but at home a girl cannot condomise, it’s only a man,” Mhaule added.

“Even if you want to go and open a case, how are you going to open it if the mother says, ‘We are dealing with it as a family?’” ​she concluded.