Ways to improve education in Africa

Part of achievement and being successful comes from education and it is the same in Africa. It has never been treated as a priority to get an education in this particular continent, but now it has become more needed than ever. Enrollment rates are growing slowly but steadily, and between the years of 1990 and 2012 it has doubled, and the state of Education in Africa is showing steady promises for further growth. To be able to grow, however, it needs investments and not just financial ones, but also time and patience to improve. These are 3 ways on how it can be done:

1. Make teachers a priority

If the quality of education needs improvement, just the teachers alone can do it, but they need to be equipped with resources and properly qualified training programs. They are the keys of education success, because they mentor the students and give them the knowledge and explanations they require. Now there is a shortage of these kinds of teachers and mentors in general. The African Ministry of Education reports that teacher certification processes need to be implemented. Detailed certification processes are going to ensure that teachers are going to be the most professional they can be, and students will benefit from it the most, in particularly in the exact studying fields. But also, it is necessary to keep best teachers in the system. The reason being that they are underpaid, they are leaving teaching jobs and searching for higher paid ones. Salary is not the only issue for them, but morale too, as well as career opportunities. There is a lack of motivation, and that impacts how they can inspire students to learn if they are not inspired to teach. Governments and education systems need to look into this problem as well.

2. Universities should be number one

Harvard university studies state that rates for university enrollment  in sub-Saharan Africa are the lowest in the world, around 5%. One of the reasons for that is that there are not enough universities. Foundations are being built for primary or secondary schools but leaving higher education behind, saying that basic education needs to be provided first. What should the students do, who have already finished school? Students, who can attend universities in different countries like United Kingdom or United States, go there; others stay behind. Universities are great for countries in general, by creating more educated communities, providing jobs, challenging young people to create companies and new opportunities. Universities can diversify the existing market since the main industry in Africa is oil.

3. Students needs are important

Africa needs to learn from Finland, not to just give out dry information and teach basic skills, but to let students enjoy the process of learning, spark their creativity and independence. That includes the resting times between classes, creating an opportunity to have hobby time, as well as process the information which they got from teachers and books. Students in Finland usually have the same teacher for 6 years, that means they bond with that person and get used to him. Communication changes based on that long relationship. If teacher can spend more time with a single student, it is encouraged to do so, as that can help struggling students to get their grades and motivation up.