Mónica Carabantes
Access to education for pregnant teenagers
Chile

In 1997, Monica Carabantes Galleguillos started her junior year at Andres Bello High School, located in the city of Coquimbo, when she became pregnant. Her parents informed the principal, who responded by saying that the institution would support Monica and ensure that all "appropriate measures" would be taken. However, months later, school authorities informed Monica and her parents that while she would be able to complete her school year, her ID would not be renewed because her pregnancy violated the school rules.

Although she was prevented from exercising their right to education, Monica Carabantes was able to complete her studies in Chile. The case triggered changes that transformed the State's responsibilities. Chile is now obligated not to cause undue harm but to actively promote and protect the right of access to education for pregnant women and girls. Moreover, pregnant women not only can not be expelled from school, but state and other educational institutions-regardless of age or grade-should also take all necessary measures to ensure access and continued participation.

Because of the incorporation of international human rights law standards into national legislation, girls and women in similar conditions will no longer face future discrimination when attempting to access to education. With the State's public acknowledgement of responsibility in the case, significant changes in public policy were achieved, including the widespread distribution of information, sensitivity training for public officials to assist women and girls and provide them with information about their rights and hold prevention campaigns on the rights of pregnant women and girls of their right to education.

Impacto del caso:

  • Monica Carabantes was able to finalize her studies in Chile in an equitable and discrimination free environment.
  • The state of Chile modified the Law on Education.
  • After ammendments made to the law, the number of pregnant women attending school increased.