Madagascar is to introduce reproductive health education in schools from April, in a bid to create awareness among the youth on sexually transmitted diseases.
According to RFI a third of girls under 18 in the Island nation are pregnant, a development which compels many of them to drop out of school.
Teenage pregnancy is said to be a key factor contributing to the country’s high illiteracy of 46 percent of the population.
Most girls don't finish school b/c of variety of reasons: deeply rooted beliefs, early marriage/pregnancy, sexual exploitation. #Madagascar— UNICEFUSA Events (@UNICEFUSAevents) July 18, 2013
Children as young as 13 or 14 years are sexually active in a country where matters regarding sex are considered a taboo.
The Malagasy government has expanded the school curricula to include education on the dangers associated with early sex.
But some parents are reportedly uncomfortable with the new addition to the school curriculum.
Tiana, a father of three children under the age of ten years told RFI that it was “very difficult” for a father “to talk about sex education” especially with his girl child.