An important boost to the development of Sierra Leone’s education sector witnessed today, with the launch of the Free Education Project in the presence of President Julius Maada Bio!
The 2020-2025 Free Education Project is financed through a Multi-Donor Trust Fund, with funds pooled from the World Bank ($50 million), the EU (€13 million), Ireland (€5 million) and UKAID (£2 million).
Among others, the project will finance the construction of approximately 510 furnished classrooms to meet the immediate infrastructure needs in basic education and provide community-managed grants to primary schools for improved school performance and accountability.
Since the Government launched its landmark Free Quality School Education Program in 2018, Sierra Leone has made significant gains in school enrollment, but education outcomes and skills acquisition are among the lowest in Africa. The education sector also faces deep access inequities (between urban and rural communities), weak sector governance and inefficient public spending and management. These challenges are further complicated by the COVID-19 crisis.
By joining hands, we can do more and better! The Free Education Project will help address these challenges, as well as support the Government in their efforts to mitigate the impact of COVID-19 on the education sector.
The EU has been and will remain at the forefront of supporting education worldwide. Being able to attend school is a basic right for every girl and boy. And when children enjoy quality education, they become voices in the establishment of democratic societies that respect human rights.