Pregnancy amongst school-going teenagers in South Africa: experiences of pregnant teenagers, parents and teachers on provision of social support

Sogo F. Matlala, University of South Africa

This paper presents the findings of a study on the experiences of parents, teachers and pregnant teenagers on provision of social support to pregnant learners attending schools in South Africa. A qualitative, exploratory, descriptive and contextual design was used. Semi-structured interviews were conducted with 25 purposively selected participants. Data analysis yielded six themes, which are: (1) identification of pregnant teenagers; (2) continuation of pregnant teenagers’ school career; (3) dilemmas related to pregnant leaners; (4) support of pregnant learners; (5) gender in pregnancy caretaking; and (6) communication between teachers and parents. Teachers and parents experienced challenges in identifying pregnant teenagers and to provide them with social support. Stakeholders were not always cooperative towards each other. Leaner pregnancy poses a serious challenge and requires a model to facilitate social support to enable teachers and parents to assist pregnant teenagers so that they benefit from schooling and experience positive health outcomes.

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Presented in Poster Session 2