White House Memo Calls For Ending Obama-Era Girls Education Program, Because Of Course

White House Memo Calls For Ending Obama-Era Girls Education Program, Because Of Course

Image via Jeff J Mitchell/Getty Images

“Let Girls Learn” program in jeopardy of disbanding for no apparent reason

The hits just keep on coming, folks. Apparently, in addition to not wanting women to be in charge of their reproductive rights, the Trump administration has decided to forego a key education initiative aimed at helping girls receive education around the world.

Started in 2015, the “Let Girls Learn” program, a key platform of former first lady Michelle Obama, was aimed to increase educational opportunities for young girls in developing countries. The program recognizes the unique challenges many girls must overcome in order to receive an education. “Around the world, girls face complex physical, cultural, and financial barriers in accessing education. As a girl grows older the fight to get an education becomes even harder.

“She often lacks the support she needs to learn. Yet, we know that educating girls can transform lives, families, communities, and entire countries. When girls are educated, they lead healthier and more productive lives,” the Let Girls Learn site states.

While the White House has acknowledged aspects of the original program “may” continue, employees were told to stop using the “Let Girls Learn” name and that the “Let Girls Learn” program would be terminated, effective immediately,  CNN reports.

Education is so critically important and something so many of us take for granted in this country. According to UNICEF, “An estimated 31 million girls of primary school age and 32 million girls of lower secondary school age were out of school in 2013. Providing girls with an education helps break the cycle of poverty. Educated women are less likely to marry early and against their will; less likely to die in childbirth; more likely to have healthy babies; and are more likely to send their children to school.”

Though she acknowledged the Trump administration change, Shelia Crowley, acting director of the Peace Corps who runs this program, also said in an email to employees,” ‘Let Girls Learn’ provided a platform to showcase Peace Corps’ strength in community development, shining a bright light on the work of our volunteers all over the world. We are so proud of what ‘Let Girls Learn’ accomplished and we have all of you to thank for this success.”

The White House, after receiving of all of the obvious backlash, then issued a statement saying, “There have been no changes to the program,” but would not answer the question as to whether “Let Girls Learn” would continue in the future or whether they actually issued the original statement at all.

Sigh.

“Girls’ education and empowerment has been a hallmark of our work over the past 56 years and we look forward to continuing those efforts with our interagency partners. We remain dedicated to the passionate work of our volunteers and staff to empower and educate girls in their communities,” a spokesman for the Peace Corps said.

Imagine someday if women around the world were given the opportunity to receive the education they deserve. Just imagine what our world could accomplish.