WASHINGTON, June 13, 2013 - The World Bank's Board of Executive Directors today approved a credit of US$20 million for basic education in Senegal. These IDA* funds will be combined with a US$46.9 million Global Partnership for Education grant supervised by the Bank, and a US$2.8 million Education Sector Capacity Building Trust Fund grant.
The Quality Improvement and Equity of Basic Education project, which uses these funds, will support the Government of Senegal’s efforts to improve education for students in primary grades, increase access to science and mathematics classes in secondary schools, and bring education to poor children in underserved areas.
“Senegal is deeply committed to education and has seen significant achievements, but much remains to be done,” said Vera Songwe, World Bank Country Director for Senegal. “This project will support the Government’s efforts to bring high quality education to poor children, a key factor affecting the country’s future development prospects.”
The project aims to improve access to basic education, particularly in the Kaffrine, Tambacounda, Matam, Louga and Diourbel regions. It also focuses on improving learning outcomes for early grades, especially 1 through 4. Further, it will support development of a national program to improve science and math teaching and learning in middle schools.
“The primary school completion rate in Senegal has come a long way, but at 65 percent it is still behind the average of 70 percent in Sub-Saharan Africa,” said Atou Seck, project Task Team Leader. “As more children enroll in school, we also need to ensure they are learning well, and I think that this project addresses both these important needs.”
* The World Bank’s International Development Association (IDA), established in 1960, helps the world’s poorest countries by providing loans (called “credits”) and grants for projects and programs that boost economic growth, reduce poverty, and improve poor people’s lives. IDA is one of the largest sources of assistance for the world’s 82 poorest countries, 40 of which are in Africa. Resources from IDA bring positive change for 2.5 billion people living on less than $2 a day. Since 1960, IDA has supported development work in 108 countries. Annual commitments have increased steadily and averaged about $15 billion over the last three years, with about 50 percent of commitments going to Africa.