WASHINGTON, July 10, 2018 – The World Bank approved a $70 million International Development Association (IDA)* grant today to strengthen higher education institutions in Burkina Faso.
The Higher Education Support Project will help Burkina Faso increase access and deliver quality education in priority areas such as agribusiness, entrepreneurship, trade, health, environmental sciences, and sustainable development. The project will also fund teacher training in modern practices of mathematics and science education. It stems from the recommendations and lessons learned from the 2017 Economic and Sector Work titled “Burkina Faso: Post-Primary Education Development.”
“This project is in line with the National Economic and Social Development Plan (PNDES) and will allow the Government of Burkina Faso to strengthen the country’s human, physical, natural, and institutional capital,” said Cheick Kanté, World Bank Country Manager for Burkina Faso.
The project aims to create an online university, support the selected higher education institutions, and build capacity within both these institutions and the supervising ministry.
The support provided to higher education and research institutions will involve financing the acquisition of lab equipment and supplies, scientific books and publications, teacher training, and the recruitment of contract teachers locally and abroad, with a view to creating a critical mass of qualified academics in the fields selected to start up research and doctorate programs. The project will ensure that financing is available to build capacity in the areas of planning policy, monitoring and management of higher education institutions, and research.
“The project aims to reduce the dropout rate through adapted teaching methods, updated curricula, the provision of suitable resources, and a larger number of qualified teachers,” said Shobhana Sosale, World Bank Task Team Leader for the project.
* The International Development Association (IDA) helps the world’s poorest countries. Established in 1960, it provides grants and low to zero-interest loans 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 75 poorest countries, 39 of which are in Africa. Resources from IDA bring positive change to the 1.5 billion people who live in IDA countries. Since 1960, IDA has supported development work in 113 countries. Annual commitments have averaged about $18 billion over the last three years, with about 54 percent going to Africa.