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Education in Africa: New Action Plan

African education ministers approved the Action Plan for the second Decade of Education (2006-2015) for Africa at a meeting on 2-4 August in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. The first Decade of Education, which ran from 1997 to 2006, turned out to be disappointing after evaluations revealed that most of its goals were not achieved. The Plan of Action for the second Decade reports that the first Decade was unsuccessful due to poor publicity, lack of ownership among key stakeholders and little support for programmes tied in with the plan’s goals from major international agencies and Africa’s development partners.

The plan for the second Decade describes science and technology as the most important tool to address challenges to development and poverty eradication. The following are the areas of focus for the 2006-2015 period:

  • Gender and culture
  • Education management information systems
  • Teacher development, education and training
  • Tertiary education
  • Technical and vocational education and training
  • Curriculum, and teaching and learning materials
  • Quality management

With regard to higher education the Plan of Action 2006-2015 calls for:

  • The development of partnerships both within Africa and with the rest of the world;
  • More women into science and technology;
  • The development of appropriate policies to address issues of global significance and impact, including cross-border education.
  • Increased funding