Girls’ Education Challenge – getting marginalised girls into school and improving learning

The project targets girls aged 11 – 15 in rural Central and Southern Malawi. It focuses on girls in the top three grades of Primary School who have been identified as at risk of dropping out of school, and girls in the community who have already dropped out of school.

The project trains 350 outstanding young female teachers to be ‘Agents of Change’ who are placed in 225 rural schools and run in and out of school activities. The project improves the literacy, numeracy, self-confidence and sexual and reproductive health of marginalised girls. The Agent of Change teachers run two after school clubs each week and one community listening club every month. They also run Child Protection and Gender Inclusivity training with the other teachers in their school.

By brokering links between the school and the community, the Agent of Change teachers encourage community and parental support for girls’ education and address barriers to their learning such as poor sexual and reproductive health, gender expectations and poverty.