Background and Aims In Nigeria, many in- school adolescents engage in risky sexual behaviour, which predisposes them to social and health consequences, including unwanted pregnancy, school drop-out, STIs and HIV/AIDS. This study addressed drop-out rate due to pregnancy among female high school students in rural SW Nigeria.
Methods The study utilized quasi-experimental design which consisted of four experimental schools in one rural local Government Area (LGA) and four control schools in another rural LGA which were randomly selected from the 30 existing LGAs in Osun State (One of the six states in SW Nigeria). The experimental schools received the intervention strategies (reproductive health educational messages including contraceptive services) while the control ones did not.
The intervention strategies were implemented for two and half school calendar terms (a calendar term in Nigeria lasts approximately thirteen weeks), from November 2008 to June, 2009. Drop-out rate due to pregnancy were collected in both groups at pre- and post- intervention using school attendance records and home visits.
Results The results showed a sharp reduction in the average proportion of students who dropped out due to pregnancy in all the intervention schools compared with the control group which recorded a slight change. The change was from 57.3% to 26.2% in the intervention group, while the control was from 64.5% to 55.0%.
Conclusions The study showed that the intervention strategies had an impact on reduction of school drop-out rate due to pregnancy.