HakiElimu published a statement last week on the allocation of new primary school teachers to different regions, including this chart:
Pupil teacher ratios in Tanzanian primary schools, by region, 2013 and 2014. Source: HakiElimu
Their main point is that although the teacher-pupil ratio has dropped in most regions, there doesn’t seem to be any effort to send new teachers to the regions where they are needed most. Even in regions where the ratio is below the national target of 1:40, more new teachers are being added – see Pwani, Morogoro, Iringa, Kilimanjaro, Katavi, Arusha – while regions like Tabora, Mara, Geita, Mwanza and Kagera remain below the target.
Let’s start with the good news. If you are a final year (St 7) Primary School student in Bukoba Urban, with parents who completed secondary education and who are not very poor, you went to pre-school and your family speaks Swahili at home, then you have a 95% chance of being able to completed Standard 2 level tests in Numeracy, Swahili and English.
And the bad news: If you are a St 7 student in Kibondo District, with parents who didn’t themselves attend school and are poor, the chance of you being able to complete the same tests is only 9%. Continue reading →
Around 230 more cables relating to Tanzania were released over the weekend, bringing the total to over 700. And just to make things complicated, the most recent batch are not separated from the previously released cables, so looking through the new ones requires that you also look through all the old ones.
But let’s get to the point. And there are three more points of particular interest that I have found in the new releases, as follows.
First up, the one cable that has attracted the most headlines and an emphatic denial – the claim by a former US Ambassador to Tanzania than the Kempinsky Hotel chain paid for President Kikwete to travel to London and to buy five tailor-made Saville Row suits. Continue reading →
If the goal is simply to get children into schools, Tanzania’s education sector deserves (and receives) full credit. But if we want those children to actually learn something, getting them into school is only the first (and easiest) step. Unless that is followed up with well-trained and fairly paid teachers and money for text books and other teaching equipment, those children aren’t going to learn much. And if they’re not learning, what’s the point of the children being there?
A few weeks ago on this blog we shared Kwanza Jamii Njombe’s investigation on the Primary Education Capitation Grant – a grant to each school of 10,000/- per pupil per year, for spending by the schools on text books, teaching materials, etc. Our report revealed some shocking findings – and which has provoked a stern response from the Council Education Department (of which more will be posted here as the story develops). Schools were found to be receiving only around 10% of the amount specified in policy. Continue reading →