Education enables girls to make their own decisions and to influence their families positively. Education saves and improves the lives of girls and women. It allows them greater control of their lives and provides them with skills to contribute to their societies. UNICEF (2004) report indicates that girls’ education leads to more equitable development, stronger families, better services, better child health and effective participation in governance.
Despite the obvious benefits of Education to national development, research findings indicate that girls’ dropout rate from school is higher than that of boys. It observed that Tanzanian girls, for various reasons bordering on religious, cultural, socio-economic and school related factors, are not given a fair chance in the educational sector. In Tanzania, about 7. 3 million children do not go to school, of which 62% are girls (UNICEF 2004). The same UNICEF report indicates that girls’ primary school completion rate is far behind that of boys, at 76% compared with 85% for boys.
This gender gap means that millions more girls than boys are dropping out of school each year. This goes to show that the majority of children not in school are girls. Mohammed (2004) equally reported that a girl may be withdrawn from school if a good marriage prospect arises. Early marriage is a sociocultural factor that hinders the girl child’s access to school. Some parents, in an attempt to protect their teenage daughters, give them out to wealthy old friends.
Some of these girls who attempt to escape from such forced marriages end up in disaster. Alika and Egbochuku (2009) found that the socio-economic status of the girls imposes considerable constraints upon their continuing stay in school. In fact, they asserted that a girl’s particular socio-economic inheritance may have a direct and important effect on educational attainment. The Problem Education, which is the right of every child, is a mirage in the lives of some Tanzanian girls because some of them are forced into early marriage as from age 12.
Poverty has been known to force most parents to withdraw their children from school UNICEF (2004) report indicates that some 121 million children are out of school for various reasons and 65 million of them are girls. With the educational rights of 65 million girls unmet, something should be done to ensure that they complete their education. The same report indicates that Tanzania is one of the 25 developing countries of the world with low enrolment rates for girls, gender gap of more than 10% in primary education and with more than 1 million girls out of school.
This is a problem that requires emergency action if the nation is to advance technologically, considering the multiplier and intergenerational benefits derivable in the education of the girl child. It is the aim of this study, therefore, to find out reasons why girls dropout of school in Tanzania and, consequently, based on the findings proffer counselling strategies that could be adopted in order to check the incidence of drop out from school among girls in Tanzania.
Research Question To guide this investigation, one research question will be formulated 1. What are the reasons for high dropping out of school by girls in Tanzania? The descriptive survey design will be adopted for this study. The study sought to determine the reasons for dropping out from school among girls in Tanzania. The population of the study will comprised all girls who dropped out of school and re-enrolled in schools in Tanzania. Four primary schools, four secondary schools and four skill acquisition centres will be used for the study.
A stratified random sampling procedure will be adopted in selecting the secondary schools, on the basis of their status i. e. all girls’ schools and all co-educational schools. For the primary schools, the upper primary classes will be used for the study while for the skill acquisition centres, two government skill acquisition centres, one nongovernmental skill centre and one private skill centre will be used for the study. The research instrument used will be a checklist on reasons for dropping out of school.
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