Par­ents are not teach­ing their chil­dren

Pretoria News Weekend - - OPINION -

PRE­DICTABLY, the Ba­sic Ed­u­ca­tion Department’s pro­posal to teach pupils about their choices in the event of a preg­nancy is be­ing re­sisted. Matakanye Matakanya, gen­eral sec­re­tary of the Na­tional As­so­ci­a­tion of School Gov­ern­ing Bod­ies, says schools are not the right plat­form for talk about con­tra­cep­tives and abor­tions. “The gov­ern­ment has been giv­ing our chil­dren the li­cence to do all the wrong things – it must be stopped. It is due to the gov­ern­ment’s poli­cies that we find our­selves with such prob­lems. As par­ents, we are well ca­pa­ble of teach­ing our chil­dren about morals at home,” he says.

While it is ac­cepted that not all would have re­sulted from con­sen­sual sex, per­haps Matakanya would care to ex­plain the 15 740 school­girl preg­nan­cies recorded in 2015.

Some of the young moth­ers were in grades 3, 4 and 5 – 10, 11 and 12 years old.

The re­spon­si­bil­ity of ed­u­cat­ing their chil­dren about sex, preg­nancy and sex­u­ally trans­mit­ted diseases lies with par­ents, but hav­ing ab­di­cated this re­spon­si­bil­ity, the Ed­u­ca­tion Department must step in to stem the tide of teen preg­nan­cies. In the department’s ab­sence, chil­dren will get their (mis)in­for­ma­tion from peers and on­line.

The in­for­ma­tion pro­vided in science sub­jects at school is an in­tro­duc­tion to how the re­pro­duc­tive sys­tem works. It does not pro­vide any sup­port for some­one in a sex­ual re­la­tion­ship – will­ingly or not – or who is too young to know what is be­ing done to them is wrong

Life Ori­en­ta­tion should be han­dled by guid­ance coun­sel­lors or teach­ers with knowl­edge and ex­pe­ri­ence, and who should con­duct these lessons in a holis­tic man­ner that not only ed­u­cates pupils about pills, con­doms and abor­tions, but makes them aware of the im­pli­ca­tions of a sex­ual re­la­tion­ship and what to do in the event of a preg­nancy.

Par­ents and re­li­gious or­gan­i­sa­tions should sup­port this ini­tia­tive. In­stead of adopt­ing a head-in-the-sand ap­proach, they should work with the department to de­ter­mine the con­tent of such ed­u­ca­tion.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from South Africa

© PressReader. All rights reserved.