(CNN)A regional West Africa court ordered the Sierra Leone government to lift a policy barring pregnant students from attending school. The Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) court on Thursday also urged the government to abolish part-time schools for pregnant schoolgirls which rights campaigners say is “discriminatory.” In 2015, the Sierra Leone government adopted a policy barring pregnant girls from mainstream schools following an increase in teenage pregnancy rates linked to closure schools during the Ebola crisis, according to Equality Now, one of the advocacy groups, which brought the case before the court in 2018. Specialized centers were set up for pregnant students, according to the rights group. “A girl cannot get pregnant on her own in the first instance. Also, many of these girls come from poor families, and once they lose a year, they will not return to school,”Judy Gitau from Equality Now told CNN. Read More They failed mandatory pregnancy tests at school. Then they were expelled Amnesty International described the judgment as a “landmark moment” for thousands of girls who were denied inclusive education because of the ban. Marta Colomer, Amnesty International West and Central Africa Acting Deputy Director Campaigns hopes that the ruling would… Read full this story
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