Improving the quality, efficiency and access to basic education in Djibouti
In 1999, Djibouti requested the assistance of the World Bank in order to establish an assessment of the country’s education system, with the desire to tackle the shortcomings and achieve schooling for all children of primary school age by 2010. In 2005, the International Development Association (IDA) financed the second phase of the project, which in 2011 resulted in the schooling of more than 7,000 children, thanks to the construction and equipment of 102 classrooms . During the same period, 95% of teachers and all school principals have benefited from continuous training, which has improved the quality of school programs.
Djibouti is one of the poorest countries on the planet: 74% of the population lives below the poverty line and 42.2% suffers from extreme poverty. The country also has one of the lowest school enrollment rates in the world (39%) and a very high proportion of illiterates (70%), mostly made up of women (85%).[w1] . Although encouraging progress has been made under the School Access and Quality Improvement Project, the education system continues to face serious challenges that challenge the ability of the countries to achieve the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) by 2015. Despite the government’s efforts to improve access to education, demand still exceeds supply and the quality of education continues to decline. suffer from the shortage of qualified teachers, the archaism of educational content, the lack of textbooks, the high number of repetitions and dropouts, and overcrowded classes. Finally, despite a large share of the budget allocated to the education sector (6.3% of gross domestic product in 2004),
The Second School Access and Education Quality Improvement Project has three objectives, each of which is part of the government’s master plan: equitable access to basic education, improvement of the quality of education and increasing the efficiency of the education system. The project is structured around three main components which aim to 1) increase the enrollment and retention rates of pupils (with priority given to girls and children with special needs), within adequate structures so that they can complete their primary education; 2) better service delivery to support quality learning and teaching, and reduce repetition and dropout rates;
Equitable access to basic education has largely been achieved . Between 2006 and 2011, the project made it possible to broaden access to schools, by building and equipping 102 classrooms in rural and urban areas, which led to an increase in school enrollment in primary school, benefiting more than 7,000 children, including nearly 3,300 girls.
In-service training capacities for teachers have been increased. The project helped to certify a team of 20 qualified trainers, responsible for teacher training, at central and regional levels, and 24 teacher trainers and pedagogical advisors following a teaching and learning approach based on the skills. Between 2009 and 2011, 95% of teachers benefited from in-service training (against an initial target of 90%), and 100% of school principals and pedagogical advisers took regular part in additional training organized on the year. In total, some 3,731 teaching and administrative staff (3,296 teachers, 271 school principals and 164 pedagogical advisers) received training.
Teachers are subject to improved monitoring . The project provided the inspectorates with eight vehicles that allow inspectors to visit schools three to four times a month, compared to once. They can thus monitor teachers’ attendance at a more regular frequency.
Djibouti has the capacity to produce quality textbooks. The project contributed to the transformation of the National Education Research, Information and Production Center (CRIPEN) into an autonomous entity, now responsible for the production of primary school textbooks, adapted to the local context. .
The Ministry of National Education and Vocational Training is in the process of reorganizing its services. The ministry acknowledged that the conclusions of an institutional audit convinced it of the necessary reorganization of the education system, especially since it began a process of decentralization.
Contribution of the World Bank Group
IDA has allocated $10 million for the second phase of the project, while the Djiboutian government has released an additional $1 million.
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