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More Children Attend Primary School in Burkina Faso

Last Updated: March 2007
IDA at Work: Education - 550,000 More Children Attend Primary School in Burkina Faso

Challenge

In the 1990s, Burkina Faso’s primary school enrollment rate was among the lowest in the world, particularly in rural areas where children are kept home because of distance to schools, high cost of schooling, and high opportunity costs for poor families where children contribute significantly to the family income. In addition, the Ministry of Basic Education, which employs the largest group in the civil service, had been hampered by its weak capacity, especially in planning and budgeting.

Approach

- A three-phased program to support the government's Basic Education 10-Year Program—the first phase of which was completed in 2006.
- Establish a basket of coordinated funding for education reform from various donors.
- Improve access to primary education in rural areas - particularly in the 20 provinces with the lowest enrollment ratio - through additional construction and rehabilitation of schools, and financing of equipment and facilities.
- Also supports curriculum development and teacher training and capacity-building within the Ministry of Basic Education, with particular attention to the areas of financial management, budgeting, procurement, monitoring, evaluation and donor coordination.

Results

School construction plus increased teachers' recruitment and assignment to rural areas have had a noticable impact on enrollment rates.

Highlights:
- Gross enrollment rate (GER) nationwide increased to 62 percent (55 percent for girls) in 2006 from 42 percent (36 percent for girls) in 2000; in the 20 most underprivileged provinces: GER rose to 47 percent (41 percent for girls) from 30 percent (24 percent for girls) in the same period.
- An additional 550,000 children have been enrolled in primary school (of a targeted 384,000 children).
- An additional 7,000 classrooms were been built in 2006, mainly in rural areas (70 percent of total), compared to 15,000 in 2000.
- More than 5 million free textbooks have been purchased and distributed to students and schools.
- Teachers' recruitment and their assignment to rural areas, as well as in service training programs, are improving learning outcomes. The number of public teachers has increased by 8 percent since 2000 (to 22,374), and double-shift teaching has decreased.
- Better allocation of resources in the education sector and the groundwork has been laid for ensuring the sector’s financial sustainability.

Contribution

- US$32.6 million from 2002-08 (total program cost is US$110 million)
- IDA supported the government in its development of a long-term program
- IDA proposed the approach of basket funding for donors across the sector and provided a framework for harmonizing partners’ support and effectively allocating resources.
- IDA’s support (both technical and financial) in strengthening capacity in financial management and procurement resulted in improved country systems and provided the basis for the use of country systems in the education sector by donor partners.
- IDA also supports the development of a legal framework for decentralization, which determines modalities for transfer of basic education schools management to communes, and facilitates scaling-up direct transfer of funds to schools for improving communities’ participation in school management.
- The project enabled Burkina Faso to be eligible for the Fast Track Initiative (FTI).

Partners

Belgium, Canada, Denmark, the European Commission, France, the Netherlands, Sweden, UNICEF -- as well as NGOs - channeled additional resources through a common basket fund.

Next Steps

IDA will continue to support the government’s 10-year program to ensure that the foundations laid down for the reform of the sector will be strengthened and the reforms including the financial sustainability of the education sector will be achieved over time. A Post-Primary Education Project builds on the current operation and is being implemented in parallel to address the issue of access and equity in secondary education.

Learn More

Basic Education Sector Project (2002-2008)
Project documents


For more information, please visit the Projects website.

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