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Family Planning Outcomes and Primary School Attendance in Sub-Saharan Africa
Authors: Abiba Longwe, and Jeroen Smits
Source: Studies in Family Planning, 43(2): 127
Topic(s): Education
Family planning
Country: Africa
  Multiple African Countries
Published: JUN 2012
Abstract: This study examines the relationship between women’s family planning outcomes and primary school enrollment among their 8–11-year-old children. We analyze household- and wider-context-level data for 103,000 children in 30 sub-Saharan African countries. Negative associations with school enrollment are found for those who have short preceding or succeeding birth intervals, a young sibling, or a mother who is pregnant. These findings remain unchanged after controlling for socioeconomic and demographic characteristics. Analysis of interaction effects shows that many associations with family planning outcomes depend on the context in which the household is living, revealing the importance of a situation-specific approach. Findings indicate that helping families improve their pregnancy planning will increase children’s schooling opportunities and lead to more effective use of household and community resources.