Lack of role models fuelling school dropout among girls in Malawi


Lack of women in rural areas who finished secondary school is one of the factors that is making a lot of girls to drop out of school in Nkhotakota district, it has been observed.

As the country is tirelessly fighting hard to see many girls getting far with education, the case is not the same in Nkhotakota district where a lot of teenage girls are mothers and out of school.

Malawi24 conducted a snap survey in remote areas of Nkhotakota namely Mpamantha, Sani, Mapala and Chipwato.

The findings that Malawi24 has established are indicating that a lot of young girls in rural areas of Nkhotakota lack people who act as examples to them.

Girls Malawi

Gilrs dropping out from school in alarming numbers. (Library)

The findings show that in the remote areas of Nkhotakota there are few or almost no woman who is doing tertiary education or holding a high position.

In an interview, Mercy Damalawo who is one of the girls in Chipwato area said she does not see the reason of going further with education since she is yet to meet a woman who has profited from education.

“I can’t waste my time going to school as if there is anyone who is making it through education, school is just a waste of time according to me,” He said.

Malawi24 also interviewed another girl Fatuma Mayisala from Sani area who dropped out of school in Standard 4.

According to Mayisala, she has never seen any girl having her life changed after obtaining a Malawi School Certificate of Education.

“I see girls here going to school but when they claim that they have finished their education we almost use same things. What is the difference then between me who is not educated with them who claim to be educated,” she said.

Father Andrew Banda is the Director of a private primary school called Chankhasi in the district and he has said that lack of women who became successful through education is one of the factors that is making a lot of girls to see no hope in education.

“This is really true. I can give you an example of this area Sani, you can’t find a native woman who is achieving with education and this pull down the girls from working hard at school,” Father Banda said.

He gave an example of his school where girls drop out after getting pregnant or in order to get married.

According to Father Banda, this is worrisome because if girls can be educated in rural areas, Nkhotakota can be transformed because educating a lady is educating the nation.