Publication: Mozambique : Poverty and Social Impact Analysis, Primary School Enrollment and Retention, The Impact of School Fees

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Though the national education system, including primary education, is neither compulsory, nor free in Mozambique, the school network has witnessed an impressive expansion since the signing of the Peace Agreement in 1992. Enrollments in lower primary education (Ensino Primario do Primeiro Grau or EP1, grades 1 through 5) have reached near universal proportions. In the period from 1992 to 2003, the gross admission rate to grade 1, grew from 59 percent to 123 percent, the gross enrollment rate (GER) in EP1 increased from 60 percent to 112.7 percent, and the number of lower primary schools rose from 2,800 to over 8,000. Indicators of the internal efficiency and quality of education, however, do not display the same pattern of development: efficiency and quality indicators, such as repetition and dropout rates, the proportion of qualified teachers, and the number of school shifts and of daily hours of instruction, have improved only marginally. Given that repetition and dropout rates are about 22 percent and 8 percent respectively in EP1, the high access rate evident in grade 1 is obviously declining dramatically, as pupils move through the system. There is considerable debate in Mozambique on formal and informal school fees, and on the potential impact of a fee reduction, or the elimination of fees on the demand for schooling. The main objective of this poverty and social impact analysis (PSIA) is to measure the impact of direct costs (formal and informal school fees, and related schooling expenses), and opportunity costs on enrollment and pupil retention in primary education. The analysis also provides insights into the contextual factors associated with low pupil retention, and an examination of the likely impact, and magnitude of policy alternatives aimed at lowering all costs, and mitigating contextual factors.
World Bank. 2005. Mozambique : Poverty and Social Impact Analysis, Primary School Enrollment and Retention, The Impact of School Fees. © Washington, DC. License: CC BY 3.0 IGO.
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