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EDUCATION OPPORTUNITIES IN THE UNITED KINGDOM
Rwanda High Commission is delighted to report the recent official signing of the MOU between the Ministry of Education and the Cambridge Commonwealth Trust & Cambridge Overseas Trust.
The above partnership is aimed at sponsoring up to five Masters and PHD level scholars at Cambridge University each year for a period of five years. The costs of the scholarships are equally divided between the Ministry of Education and Cambridge Commonwealth Trust & Cambridge Overseas.
SFAR scholarship committee will target applicants:
Scholars selected for the programme will be expected:
Manchester University Equity and Merit Scholarships for Rwanda and Uganda 2011/12
The University of Manchester has offered to Rwanda and Uganda up to seven scholarships for postgraduate taught masters starting in September 2011. The scholarships are intended to support students who come from disadvantaged backgrounds and would not otherwise be able to study abroad.
Scholarships are aimed at applicants from disadvantaged backgrounds. Applicants should:
How to apply
Application forms can be obtained from the Kulika Uganda offices at Plot 472, Nsambya Road or downloaded here:
Applications should be sent to:
Assistant Education Co-ordinator
The deadline is 29 April 2011. Applications received after this date will not be processed. Applicants who have not heard from the sponsor by the end of May should assume that they have not been successful.
Education & Health
For the last 16 years, Rwanda has made tremendous progress in increasing access to education, but as it very often happens, when you have rapid increase in access, the quality doesn’t follow necessarily. Indeed quality depends on having well trained, qualified and motivated teachers which is the current challenge due to the big numbers needed. It also depends on availing to teachers and students sufficient teaching aids (good curriculum, good and abundant textbooks, laboratories, etc.) as well as good infrastructure which again are not easy to provide whilst the number of schools and students increasing tremendously and rapidly.
Below is a brief on the current progress:
• Before 1994, pre-primary education (Nursery) was quasi nonexistent;
• Since 1994 there have been private initiatives by individuals, communities and civil society organization to create nursery schools. At the end of 2008 we had 2132 pre-primary schools with a pupil population of about 145,000.
• Government has responded by:
• Developing a curriculum for pre-primary education;
• Drafting a policy for pre-primary education;
• Mobilizing local administration; communities; civil society especially faith-based organizations; private sector to involve themselves in creating and running pre-primary schools;
Note: The Government intends to pay a lot of attention to the age group of 3-6 years following demonstrated evidence from Pedagogues and psychologists that the 3-6 year age is the best year to initiate long lasting learning processes that to this level of education notably by training specialized teachers.
2.2. Access to Primary Education
This was achieved because massive construction primary schools and massive training of teachers; - introduction of Capitation Grant and removal of school fees (education is free at primary school in public and private Government aided schools); – introduction of school feeding; - Grassroots mobilization by local leaders, etc.
2.3. Access to Secondary Education:
This means that between 1994 and 2008 the number of children in Secondary schools grew by 474% (has almost sextupled) while the population grew by 25.7%, this was achieved because of construction of many secondary schools both public and private, Introduction of Capitation Grant, etc.
In 2008, the Secondary School population was about 13.2% of the primary school population. There can’t be a better proof of the lack of access to Secondary education.
• Massive introduction of 9 Year Basic Education as promised by His Excellency Paul Kagame during his election campaign. Every child entering primary school should at least finish 9 years of free education (6 years of primary and 3 years of secondary).
• Rwanda will need to expand access to upper second level and the TVET to avoid shifting the bottleneck that existed at the end of Primary to the end of lower secondary level.
In 2009 Rwanda launched a massive campaign for 9-Year Basic Education (9-YBE) program and as a result
• In January 2009, 765 schools (242 former ESI + 523 new) opened a 9-YBE program and received 126,000 S1 students whereas the existing secondary schools received about 27,000 S1 students (a 367% increase!).
• This was possible because of the introduction of double shift in primary schools (availing classrooms) and specialization of teachers (availing teachers).
• Access to secondary education for almost all primary leaving students (even those who had been unable before);
• Gender balance in secondary education
• Better distribution of Secondary schools
2.4. Access to Higher Education
However, even with these impressive developments the tertiary sector faces significant challenges if it is to make its full contribution to the national development agenda. The higher education sector is relatively small. As a 10% graduate population is generally considered to represent the minimum acceptable level to hope for sustainable economic growth and development, Rwanda is extremely badly placed in international competitive terms. In fact, the 10% graduate population target suggests 960,000 graduates are needed (for the current estimated population of 9.6 million). It is however estimated that the current population of university graduates is less than 100,000. Therefore, even if we were to maintain our freeze our population size as it is today, with the current enrolment capacity of our higher learning institutions of about 15,000 students per year, it would take us more that 60 years to achieve the suggested minimum acceptable level of graduate population to ensure sustainable economic growth and development of our country!
We have a situation with many of our Higher Learning Institutions whereby Deans and Heads of Departments are Masters Degree holders and because an entire department is run by staffs that are not qualified to a PhD level (even if they may have some visiting lecturers with PhDs). Because of the scarcity of qualified lecturers, institutions tend to steal lecturers from one other by offering them slightly better salaries or excessively borrow lecturers from each other.
This excessive borrowing of lecturers has a detrimental consequence on research. Lecturers tends to run from university to university as visiting lecturers in order to increase their revenues and have no time to carry out research or adequately coach and supervise students doing their research for their final projects. Many HLIs resort to hiring expatriates. In some of our HLIs more than 75% of lecturers with PhDs are expatriates. This is an untenable solution because it is expensive.
Health and Development
The Government of Rwanda is committed to improving the Rwandan population’s health situation by strengthening the quality of service delivered and providing access to treatment through universal health insurance coverage (Mutuelles de Santé).
Health sector successes