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Education Week: International Initiatives Fuel Growth of Open Ed. Content - 1 views

Teachers Without Borders

China to offer compulsory education to 95 percent of girls - 0 views

    BEIJING, Aug. 8 (Xinhua) -- An official document released on Monday pledged that the government will endeavor to provide compulsory education to 95 percent of Chinese girls over the next ten years.

    The Outline for the Development of Chinese Women (2011-2020) issued by the State Council, or China's cabinet, said that the government will continue to promote equal opportunity for nine years of free schooling for all children, but especially for girls, who are more likely to drop out.
Teachers Without Borders Rwanda: More Than Building Schools - Access to Affordable Sanitary Pads ... - 1 views

  • How can countries encourage girls to attend school? Is the answer providing free textbooks or building schools closer to their homes? While these are important pieces of the puzzle, there is another issue that influences whether girls attend school: menstruation.
  • According to the United Nations Children's Fund, one in 10 African girls stays home during menses or drops out of school. In many cases, girls do not have access to affordable sanitary pads, and social taboos against discussing menstruation compound the problem.
  • Sustainable Health Enterprises (SHE) in 2007 to address this problem. SHE works in Rwanda with its she28 campaign to develop an affordable and eco-friendly pad made from banana stem fibers so that girls can attend school unimpeded by worries over their menses.
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  • Not only is SHE working to help girls attend school during menses, but also the group is taking a market-based approach to boost local businesses in Rwanda. SHE plans to sell its more-affordable pads to local entrepreneurs, focusing on women sellers.
  • However, after talking to local girls, the SHE staff realized that the girls wanted health and hygiene education as well. In response, SHE has trained more than 50 community health and hygiene education workers, reaching some 5,000 Rwandans, according to Camacho.
  • SHE's work in Rwanda shows that a comprehensive approach is needed to expand women and girls' educational opportunities. "Women and girls are often left behind because of some of these silent issues," Camacho explains. "We need to approach women and girls' education in a holistic way."
    Would SHE be interested in getting its health and hygiene education materials into the Sugar Labs program for Replacing Textbooks, as a Free OER to be provided with OLPC XO laptops as Rwanda rolls them out? We would be interested in whatever they have in Kinyarwanda, French, or English, and would then offer them for translation to be used in other countries.
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