Abolishing School Fees in Africa is the product of a SFAI workshop, “School Fee Abolition: Building on What We Know and Defining Sustained Support,” held in Kenya in 2006. The book begins with a comparative overview of the processes, challenges, and lessons learned by five countries that had already abolished school fees: Ethiopia, Ghana, Kenya, Malawi, and Mozambique. The subsequent chapters delineate the actual experiences of each of the countries in planning and implementing their policies.

The International Monetary Fund (IMF) restrictions on recurrent government spending are working against the MDGs, and Education for All, this report argues. Through research with the governments of Malawi, Mozambique and Sierra Leone, this study shows that IMF-imposed macroeconomic policies and explicit caps on teachers’ wage bills have forced many poor countries to freeze or curtail teacher recruitment, and are a major factor behind the chronic and severe shortage of teachers.

This workshop had 4 objectives:

  • Highlight the issue of the right to education of children and young people deprived of their liberty
  • Bring about better coordination between all stakeholders involved in this sector.
  • Examine the practical contingencies to be addressed in view of promoting quality basic education to all minors deprived of their liberty in Africa, and outline which actors could take part in the conception and implementation of the proposed actions.
  • Examine how to contribute to coordinating and enhancing the relationship between African organisations and their governments to progressively improve access to basic education in detention environments, taking stock of relevant experiences existing on other continents.

The report presents the conclusions and recommendations of the workshop as well as practical resolutions.

These conclusions and strategy for action present:

  • Preconditions for education of minors in prisons, including legal framework and regulations
  • Educational programmes for minors: objectives, content and implementation
  • Common Strategy for an efficient action in favour of education of minors in prisons in Africa

The Kampala Convention is the first international treaty, adopted at regional level (Africa), that protect internally displaced persons. It binds governments to provide legal protection for the rights and well-being of those forced to flee inside their home countries due to conflict, violence, natural disasters, and other human rights abuses. Article 9.2 (b) refers to education.

This report is the culmination of five years’ implementation of ActionAid’s multi-country project aimed at empowering girls and enabling them to enjoy their rights to education and participation in a violence-free environment. The uniqueness of this project resides in the connection between research, community intervention and advocacy reinforced by a strong partnership approach.

On ActionAid website are also available the executive summary (French and English) and the success stories (English and Portuguese).

This article is based on a year-long study of the right to education for child refugees and migrants from other African countries who find themselves in South Africa. It identifies a number of factors that inhibit children’s participation in education and shows how the right to education can be assessed and monitored using indicators.

In Mozambique, 14% of children between two and nine years old are disabled. They are often hidden away by their families – in effect rendered invisible – and are vulnerable to discrimination as well as an increased risk of violence. These children need greater support from their families and better access to education, which would enable them to attend school with their peers. But that can only happen if the necessary facilities, equipment and training are provided.

This video shows the difficulties children with disabilities face to access education as weel as great examples of inclusive education.


Attaining primary and secondary school education for girls in Liberia remains a major challenge. Girls aged below 10 years are pulled out of formal education, by traditionalists, and forced to take part in traditional female initiation ceremonies in informal settings locally known as bush schools. As a consequence, nearly half of women in Liberia are illiterate, according to United Nations statistics. However a programme supported by the United Nations Human rights office is engaging with some of the rural communities in Liberia to encourage them to allow girls to complete formal education. One county, the Grand Cape Mount has been successful in convincing traditionalists to stop pulling girls out of school, for initiation.


This article explores the increasing privatisation of education. It examines various criticisms of the private provision of education and claims that privatisation is driven by an ideological agenda which is generally uncaring about any notion of the “public good” purposes of education — that is, of its role in producing social cohesion through the provision of education that is of high quality for all members of society.

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