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Kelly Atkinson
14 April 2016
Byrd
Gen-X
Benefits of Increasing Education in Girls Around the World
In the world today there are more than seven billion people and about half of them are
girls. This statistic is one of the few that equally represents girls compared to boys. An
appalling reality for most girls in developing countries, is a life that does not usually include an
education. It is a heartbreaking truth to realize that young girls are subjected to sexual assault,
childhood marriage, and diseases due to lack of education. This issue links to many other global
problems such as poverty, early marriage, and discriminatory violence. When empowered, young
girls can claim their identity and excel in exploration of their own voice. The purpose of my
research is to explain how increasing education in young girls is beneficial to the global
economy through the explanation of health, early marriage, and work.
Across the globe, young girls are far less likely than young boys to attend secondary
school or any school at all which is greatly effecting their health. If all women had a primary
education, there would be 15% fewer child deaths (United). Despite encouraging development
since 2000, the global goal of educating girls is still obscure. According to the World Bank
Factsheet, out of the 124 million children in school only 63 million are girls. This is creating a
stigma that girls should not be allowed or want to go to school. Young girls continue to be more
likely than boys to never enroll in school which proves, Education has an enduring, consistent,
and growing effect on health (Baker). When a girl is prevented from going to school her mental
health, physical health, and social development are at risk.

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Access to education also depends on ones demographic location they are born into. Due
to this developing countries are far less likely to send their girls to school. In 10 countries, 9
out of 10 of the poorest young women have not completed primary school (United). If girls can
receive education they are less likely to experience severe health issues. With better education
comes self discovery and enriching oneself in the world. There was a concept introduced in the
early 2000s called the Primal Blueprint, which teaches one what to value in regards to health,
nutrition, individuality, emotion while enhancing our sense of humanity. This would not be
possible without education and is evident when focusing on developing countries with severe
lack of education in young girls.
Mental and physical health are equally important and there should be no shame for one
who cannot achieve an acceptable level of either one. In India some 42% of the 160 million
children, under the age of five are underweight (Monitoring). Prime Minister Manmohan Singh
pronounced the country in a state of national shame and malnutrition as unacceptably high in
the beginning of 2012. Over the past seven years there has been great signs of progress, that one
in five children has reached an acceptable healthy weight. From the World Bank Nutritional
Global Monitoring Report, it is said that girls who had lower health and lack of education may
have experienced reduced care time from parental figure(s), and their household may not have
managed to protect them from the general health environment. All of these factors are leading
contributors to health issues in young girls.
Gender based violence is a worldwide issue that is derived from comprehensive
demographic, health, empowerment, education, employment, and participation in household
decision making. More than one in six married women in each country that was studied
reported being pushed, shaken, slapped, or targeted with a thrown object by their partner

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(United). With increased education as a young girl, grown married women are more likely to be
able to handle tougher situations or leave their partner if violence arises. At least one in ten has
been threatened or publically humiliated by their [partner] (Lalasz). Education empowers
women to overcome violence and have greater awareness of their rights. In return this creates
significant confidence needed in making decisions that affect their lives, and improve the health
of themselves and their children.
Women and young girls who do not have the opportunity to become aware of their rights,
are completely dependent on men to provide for them and their children. When young girls get
to a certain age they are then married off because the family cannot provide for them any longer
and another man takes over. Girls all over the world are having their innocence ripped away
from them when they are forced to marry someone two to three times their age. Young girls who
have more times than not, been denied an education are more likely to get married at an early
age. If all girls [received] a primary education, there would be 14% fewer child marriages;
[and] if all girls [received] a secondary education, there would be two-thirds fewer child
marriages (United). Increasing education in young girls prevents early marriage which
consequently prevents early/young pregnancy. Young girls are not mentally or physically ready
to give birth or take care of a family.
The British Medical Journal warned that complications from pregnancy and childbirth are
the leading cause of death in young women aged 15 to 19 in developing countries. This is
because they are forced or accidentally have children before they are physically ready for
parenthood. Young children are not fully developed until they are about 18 years old and cannot
handle what it takes to be a mother and a wife at such a young age. Although this is a known
fact, [about] one third of women in developing countries give birth before age 20 (Mayor).

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Once a woman gives birth to the first child, she most likely feels more obligated to stay with the
husband even if she is unhappy, has declining health, or feels she is in danger. But if she was
educated she would naturally become more aware of her rights and be more likely to stand up for
herself and her children. In the cycle that third world countries seem to be in, if young girls in
previous generations did not receive an education then they grow into women who will be less
likely to put their girls in school. This is a continuous cycle that is depriving girls of their natural
born right to receive an education and become aware of themselves and their surroundings.
The cycle of receiving an education is progressing, yet there are still 31 million girls not
in school around the world. Educating young girls, in return means young mothers are being
educated as well. Mothers who have been educated invest more in their childrens education
which helps them become healthier and go on to have healthier children. Ensuring that girls
stay in school and learn is one of the most effective ways to prevent child marriage and forced
marriage (Global). This allows girls to become aware of their rights and increase their
confidence and maturity in understanding their role in community and global society. If all girls
completed primary school in sub-Saharan Africa and South and West Asia, the number of girls
getting married by age 15 would fall by 14%; with a secondary education, 64% fewer girls
would get married (Global). To reflect on U.S. education, girls and boys have an equal chance
at an education and it is required for a parent to put their children in the school system. In
developing countries this is not the case and the effects of lack of education are abruptly
changing the health, marriage age, and work/poverty level of an individual or a family.
Girls education has a huge impact on a large and small scale of society. Giving girls the
knowledge they need to tackle lifes challenges is a necessary step to ending poverty. Without
achieving gender equality for girls in education, the world has no chance of achieving many of

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the ambitious health, social, and development targets it has set for itself (Campaign). The main
problem with girls not being educated in regards to work is they cannot find a job and the
poverty cycle remains the same. In 2002, a study done in Guatemala showed that Individuals
who were not stunted [by lack of education or health problems at a young age] earned higher
wages and were more likely to hold higher paying skilled jobs, or white- collar jobs
(Monitoring 73). The study in Guatemala proves there is no way for women in developing
countries to ever grow out of poverty if they never receive an education. When girls receive an
education, they are more likely to find work; but when denied an education they will persistently
be denied equal opportunities in work and life. In contrast, young girls and women who receive
an education tend to have a better perspective on life.
Life satisfaction is defined as having a favorable attitude towards ones life as a whole.
Both nature and nurture seem to play a role in life satisfaction for individuals, but ones
demographic region is going to play an immense role in the amount of nature and nurture forces
in ones life. [In] Somalia 95% [of the poorest females aged 7-16] have never been to school
(Monitoring 4). This statistic shows that education is out of the parental control and girls have a
very rare chance of attending school at a young age. Living in Somalia, or any third world
country, would have a great effect on all aspects of a female life, being a nature made boundary.
There are external forces that make education very tough which then effects the health,
confidence, poverty level, and overall lifestyle of a female living in a developing country such as
Somalia.
Throughout my research it can be concluded that if one does not receive an education
they will see negative effects in their personal health, family life, and work experience. While
this is true it proves my thesis that when girls receive increasing education it is beneficial to the

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global economy through the explanation of their health, marriage, and work. When a young girl
is educated on ways to maintain a healthy mental and physical lifestyle she is far more likely to
live longer and share her knowledge within her family. She will then start a family and when she
raises her children they will in effect have a healthier lifestyle as well. It will be a continuous
cycle so girls for generations will be more aware of their health and affects of environmental
factors on their health.
Educating girls is what holds the key to a promising future for our global economy.
Women receive more pay in the workforce if they are single with no children. Therefore, if a
woman is educated and not married at a young age she will be less likely to have children and
have more time to save money for her future. Young girls and women are confident and have
goals and dreams they are willing to pursue when they become aware of what they are capable
of. If women are earning more money that means there is more disposable income, which is
supporting the global economy.
The only way for our world to show positive progress is to educate girls. 516 million
of the illiterate people in the world are female (Global). This is a travesty to know that more
than two thirds of the illiterate people in the world are female. Due to lack of education girls are
stuck in a never ending cycle of poverty which has an abundant amount of negative effects, and
it needs to be stopped. With the showing of a documentary Girl Rising many girls were shown
and how their lives have drastically changed with the introduction of schooling in their lives. A
young girl Malala quotes A full secondary education must become the ordinary expectation of
every girl in the world. Even a young girl who is new to education knows why girls are not put
into school. Girls are smart and brave and can conquer any task they put their mind to. Creating
gender equality enhances economic productivity and is good for everyone.

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Throughout my research I noticed the underlying meaning of why girls are not put into
school. The cost of education is atrocious and most poverty stricken countries do not have any
accessible route to school for children. Also there is a lot of gender violence and gender norms
such as girls should not want or even be available to receive an education. But girls are
overcoming this norm and fighting to stay in school and although it is taking an extensive
amount of effort it is working. They are having an effect on their family, community, country,
and global economy. When 10% more girls go to school a countrys GDP increases by 3%. This
proves that educating girls has a rifling effect on the global economy through the explanation of
health, early marriage, and work.

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Baker, David P. JSTOR The Education Effect on Population Health: A Reassessment.
Population and Development Review 37.2 (2011): 307332. Web.
Global Campaign for Education. Girls Can't Wait: Why Girls' Education Matters and How to
Make It Happen Now: Briefing Paper for the UN Beijing +10 Review and Appraisal.
Reproductive Health Matters 13.25 (2005): 1922. Web.
Global Monitoring Report. "World Bank's Discovery." Economic and Political Weekly 22.10
(1987): 388. Food Prices, Nutrition, and the Millennium Development Goals. The World Bank,
2012. Web. 12 Apr. 2016.
Global Partnership for Education. Gpe-girls-education-factsheet. N.p.: World Bank Group, 2016.
PDF.
Lalasz, Robert. "Domestic Violence in Developing Countries: An Intergenerational Crisis."
Domestic Violence in Developing Countries: An Intergenerational Crisis. Population Reference
Bureau, 2009. Web. 12 Apr. 2016.
United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization. "Education for All- Global
Monitoring Report." Girls Education the Facts (n.d.): n. pag. Girls' Education- the Facts.
United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization, Oct. 2013. Web. 12 Apr.
2016.
Mayor, Susan. Pregnancy and Childbirth Are Leading Causes of Death in Teenage Girls in
Developing Countries. BMJ: British Medical Journal 328.7449 (2004): 11521152. Web...