Fourteen girls have dropped out due to pregnancy at a school in Mzuzu during the current academic year.
Head teacher of Nkhorongo Community Secondary School Friday Kathonga revealed this on Tuesday when Minister of Education Science and Technology Bright Msaka visited the school to hand over 200 desks.
He said there are fears that more girls will continue to drop out due to pregnancy if nothing is done about the situation.
“From September last year to today 14 girls have dropped out of school due to early pregnancy and this is a biggest challenge here.
“If the government can help us with girls’ hostel this problem can be reduced,” he said.
In his response, Msaka said there are plans to change all community day secondary schools to conventional secondary schools.
“Issues of hostels are also dependent on the distance from school. If students around that particular school do not walk long distances you do not require hostels.
“If students are walking long distances that make them vulnerable particularly because of the distance and the children are forced to seek accommodation in a neighbourhood of the school then that exposes the children to various forms of abuse.
“So the requirement for secondary schools would depend upon the unique circumstances of the location of the school and the students that go there,” said Msaka.
He added that if all students at a school walk a distance of 2 kilometres to get to a school then they can walk safely.
Nkhorongo Community Day Secondary school has 196 female students and 212 male students.
The 200 desks will benefit Nkhorongo, Lupaso, and Mazozo community day secondary schools.