New Education Amendment Act Allows Pregnant Girls To Attend Class As Usual – Forbids Corporal Punishment.


The new Education Amendment Act allows pregnant girls to attend class as usual and also forbids Corporal Punishment. According to the new amendment girls will not be expelled from class on accounts that they have fallen pregnant. The Act also made it clear that learners are not supposed to be sent away because of non – payment of school fees. Apart from this, teachers are not allowed to beat learners according to this Act.

The Act was passed and approved by President E. D. Mnangagwa. Part of the Act reads:

Disciplinary measures must be moderate, reasonable and proportionate in the light of the conduct, age, sex, health and circumstances of the pupil concerned and the best interests of the child shall be paramount. Under no circumstance is a teacher allowed to beat a child.

Source – PindulaNews

Annually, thousands of girls become pregnant and they face many social and financial barriers that hinder them from continuing with formal education. This development means that girls who become pregnant can now continue learning just like any other child at school. Of late many of them had to drop out as despite other obvious reasons, policy was not in there favor.

Corporal punishment was lawful in Zimbabwean schools before the adoption of the Constitution in effect since 2013. A schoolteacher (defined as the head or deputy head of a school) was authorised “to administer moderate corporal punishment for disciplinary purposes upon any minor male pupil or student” in terms of Article 241 (2) b of the Criminal Law (Codification and Reform) Act of 2014. But was it really necessary then? According to skinner’s theory of operant conditioning, punishment and extinction are the two methods of decreasing a behavior or response (Kosslyn & Rosenberg, 2002).

Different people like teachers, parents and other educators have different views regarding to the punishment. There are those who support and those who oppose the use of punishment particularly corporal punishment. Those who support physical punishment believe that if children are not punished they will become unmanageable and uncontrollable. On the other hand the opposing view would consider the harmful effects of punishment including physical and psychological harm. It makes children worthless, scared and ashamed, increase child aggression, increase antisocial behavior, lower intellectual achievements and it can lead into mental health problems.

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