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For the past 15 years, USAID’s Ethiopia education activities have addressed a variety of needs across the educational system in close partnership with the Ministry of Education. The quality of education is now the single biggest challenge and priority facing the Ministry. A number of factors contribute to the poor quality of education and very low reading outcomes in primary school. Rapid growth in enrollment, currently at 95 percent; large classes, more than 100 children in many cases; and a lack of teaching and learning materials coupled with a lack of trained teachers. USAID’s strategy focuses on enabling students to learn to read in order to read to learn in higher grades.
We also partnered with the Peace Corps to improve the teaching of English, mandated as the language of instruction in higher grades.
To close the education gap between boys and girls, we’ve identified gender-related obstacles and implement remedies to remove and overcome them. Greater educational attainment, especially for girls, has proven to result in better health and nutrition, reduced infant mortality due in part to delayed marriage and child bearing, increased infant birth weight, age-appropriate entry into school, and lower risk of contracting HIV/AIDS.
Youth and Workforce Development
Young people under 25 make up almost two-thirds of Ethiopia’s population. However, barriers to Internet access inhibit the development of youth civil society, as their peers in other countries have been profoundly shaped by information and communication technology and social media access. USAID’s programming enhances the role of youth as positive and active members of their communities, especially in conflict mitigation and reconciliation. To address the needs of youth and the community as a whole, we work to help develop a relevant and useful curriculum for meaningful training that meets the needs of employers.
Reading for Ethiopia’s Achievement Developed (READ): Train teachers and develop curriculum to improve reading comprehension and writing proficiency in primary schools as the foundation for future learning.
Fre-Addis Girls’ Scholarships: Help 1,022 female high school students in 196 woredas who demonstrate strong academic performance and successfully complete grade eight, but are in need of assistance to complete secondary education by granting them scholarships.
Improving Quality of Primary Education Program (IQPEP): Improve the quality of primary education through the development of teachers’ professional capacity, provision of supplementary reading materials, and strengthening of the planning and management capacity of the primary education system.
Improving the Teaching of English Language in Ethiopia (ITELE): Enhance the proficiency of English language reading and writing and training in the colleges of teacher education and primary schools in Ethiopia.
Strengthening Civic Education in Primary Schools (SCEPS): Foster children who are socially active and responsible youngsters, promote civic education and develop self-esteem and engage in community service activities.
Transforming Education for Adults and Children in the Hinterlands (TEACH II): Increase access to education for children and adults in disadvantaged areas and improve the capacity of woreda education offices to manage non-formal education.
Last updated: March 10, 2014