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In April 2015, the Sierra Leone Ministry of Education, Science and Technology made official government policy an existing ban on visibly pregnant girls attending schools or taking exams. In addition to pregnancy testing practices that humiliate girls, this ban is a severe impediment to girls and young women pursuing and continuing their education.
For this report, Amnesty International conducted desk and field research with the ultimate goal of hearing the views of girls and women on their experiences of access to education, early pregnancy, and sexual violence. Amnesty International also contacted local experts, international NGOs, and other specialist agencies to gather to learn more of girls’ and children’s rights in the country.
Among its recommendations to the government of Sierra Leone, Amnesty International calls for a guarantee for girls’ human rights to non-discrimination and education by immediately lifting the ban on pregnant girls attending school and taking exams.