Using education as a key lever for development in the Republic of Congo
The Republic of Congo intends to use education as a key lever for development in order to ensure its economy is well integrated in the global economy. In particular, education is seen as a way to produce a well-trained and qualified workforce.
Some of the challenges that the country faces in the education sector are the under-development of pre-primary opportunities, as well as high repetition rates and large numbers of students per class in primary schools. Moreover, the quality of primary education is inadequate. Only 60% of children attend secondary school, and higher or vocational education need to be enhanced to better respond to market needs. Moreover, large inequalities still remain based on geographical location or ethnicity.
The education sector strategy 2015-2025 was developed with the full participation of key stakeholders under the leadership of the 3 ministries in charge of education. The three main axes of the strategy and related objectives are:
- To give all children a 10-year basic education through:
- Quality primary education to equip all children with basic competencies
- Lower-secondary education for all, with the options of general, technical or vocational studies
- Technical schools providing an alternative to general studies
- Expanding pre-primary education opportunities in particular for underprivileged and rural areas
- Non-formal literacy programs for children who have left school and young adults.
- To ensure adequacy between education and the economy’s need, through:
- A high school program to prepare students for higher education and work
- Technical high schools producing competencies that are relevant to the country’s economy
- Science education to develop a mathematic and scientific culture
- Higher education aiming to train a workforce for social and economic development.
- To enhance the management of the education sector: two programs (information & steering and management) will ensure the government possesses the tools needed to implement the education strategy.
The Republic of Congo intends to increase its funding to education up to 20% of the country’s budget for recurrent expenditures, provided the country’s oil revenues continue to grow.
The coordinating agency for the education sector in the Republic of Congo is UNICEF.