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Fewer than 8 out of 100 teen moms have a degree

Girls who have their first baby while a teenager are limiting their futures‚ as there is a strong likelihood of their dropping out of school to fulfil domestic chores.

Statistics South Africa’s latest gender report looked at females aged between 21–54 by their highest level of education attained and found that women who bear their first child while still quite young tend to complete fewer years of formal schooling and not proceed to higher education compared to those who delay entry into motherhood.

“The older the age at first birth‚ the higher the level of education attained. This is particularly true for females who have obtained a university degree‚” Stats SA said.

Among graduates‚ almost two-thirds (59‚2%) gave birth to their first-born child at the age of 25 years or older.

A large proportion amongst those with other tertiary qualifications were also likely to have given birth to their first child at the age of 25 years or older (40‚3%). However‚ in contrast to their counterparts with degrees‚ a higher proportion amongst this group (46‚8%) gave birth to their first child at a younger age (19–24 years).

Among those with less than matric‚ over a third (33‚3%) had their first child when they were teenagers (younger than 19 years). Teen moms who had attained matric comprised 19‚5%‚ compared with other tertiary (12‚8%) or university degrees (7‚7%).

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