Education In Africa: Challenges And Potential

Africa has had a long struggle with development, and perhaps the most important sector that needs developing in the continent is the education in Africa. Challenges in infrastructure and training have hindered the essential progress of education to help lift Africa to its potential. The spread of mobile technology and the gradual spread of the internet are opening the door to potential solutions that can grant access to knowledge to children and students throughout the region.

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Challenging Statistics of education in Africa

  • At least 30 million children do not complete primary school education
  • 8 of the 10 countries with the lowest pre-primary net enrollment rates are in sub-Saharan Africa
  • No African country has achieved the universal primary education. For a country to achieve universal primary education, all children must have completed a full course of primary schooling.
  • About half of all out-of-school African children will never step foot in a school in their lifetime
  • Across Africa, secondary schools can accommodate only 36 percent of qualifying secondary students
  • Seven out of 10 rural youth have never attended school

Steady Improvement

  • The number of children out of school in sub-Saharan Africa has decreased by over 9 million over the past two decades
  • The net enrollment rate in primary school has increased from 43% in 1975 to 78% in 2014
  • Primary completion rate has increased from 46% in 1971 to over 65% in 2015

EduTech in Africa

  • Mobile phone penetration rate: 73%
  • Internet connectivity is scarce. Less than 5% of schools are connected in several countries, including Niger and Liberia
  • Many countries face less than 20% availability of electricity in schools
  • The spread of mobile phones has been described as “explosive


Companies, organizations, and individuals who are keen to learn more about the efforts being carried out to improve education and educational technology in this precious continent meet for several events throughout the year. This week, they will meet at EduWeek in Johannesburg, South Africa, where we will also attend and join the conversation and effort to improve education in Africa.

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About Mostafa Elhashash

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One comment

  1. Thanks, great article.