Delaying Marriage and Childbearing Can Improve Educational Outcomes in Burkina Faso's Sahel Region

In Burkina Faso’s Sahel Region, an administrative region in the northeastern part of the country, girls are more likely to drop out of primary and lower secondary school than girls nationally, resulting in lower girls’ educational attainment in the Sahel Region compared to the rest of the country.

Sahelian girls are also more likely to become pregnant or get married at a younger age than girls in any other region of the country, which hinders their ability to enroll and stay in school. Delaying marriage and increasing family planning access can allow girls to stay in school longer, thereby shaping their economic opportunities and the human capital of Burkina Faso’s future labor force.

The suite of products highlights disparities in health and education in the Sahel Region compared to the national level; shares an analysis of the likelihood of girls dropping out of school for pregnancy, marriage, and unpaid care work; and provides strategies policymakers can adopt to reduce these barriers. The research brief provides further details on the methodology used in our analysis so that researchers can carry out similar analyses in the future.