Education in Tanzania

//Education in Tanzania

Tanzania - General Information

Area: 945.087 km²
Population: 49.253.126 (in 2013)
System of Government: Presidential System
Capital: Dodoma
President: John Magufuli
National Language: Swahili

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Information about education

The Tanzanian school system was heavily influenced by British colonization. There is a seven-year Primary School, which, according to the prevailing compulsory education, can attend all students for free. Afterwards, the students attend the secondary school, which comprises a total of six years of schooling (divided into four and two years). Upon successful completion, students obtain a university entrance qualification.

Since 1.1.2016, thanks to a new law by Tanzanian President Magufuli, attendance at public secondary schools up to and including 11th grade is also free. The new regulation follows the goals of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals. To obtain the Abitur, however, the 12th and 13th class must continue to be paid. Private schools continue to be chargeable, but these schools have been called upon to lower their fees to allow more children to attend school.

Abolishing school fees in secondary schools now gives more students the opportunity to complete their education and thus to pursue a better paid profession. The new regulation particularly targets girls and poorer families.

But the new law also has potential disadvantages for everyone involved. The already prevailing acute shortage of teachers is bound to worsen dramatically in the foreseeable future and it is not uncommon today for up to 70 students to be taught by a teacher in a classroom at the same time. Therefore, teachers often have difficulty in devoting themselves individually to each student and ensuring a general learning progress. In addition, many of the costs still remain for the families, such as transport, school uniforms, food, textbooks and study materials. The danger that these costs will be raised to recover the missing funds from the school fees and thus cover the operating costs of the schools is omnipresent. In addition, the visit to the upper level continues to be charged, which also represents a major financial burden for families if the child is to obtain a degree. Especially in rural areas where the shortage of teachers and the shortage of money are greatest, many children, especially girls, do not go to school at all.

The new Education Act is a very good step in the right direction. However, a lack of support threatens a decline in the quality of the classrooms and an additional burden especially families with financial difficulties. It is all the more important that students continue to be supported so that they can complete their education and take the first step towards a better future.

Related Links

Wikipedia Article: Tanzania Link
Ministry of Education Link
Website of the Government Link
Tanzanian Embassy in Germany Link

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