6 Achieve universal primary education

Where we are?

Ethiopia has done quite well in terms of meeting university primary education targets over the last decade and is on track to achieve this goal. The Net Enrolment Ratio (NER) in the lower primary school cycle (grade 1 – 4) increased from 77.5% in 2004/05 to 92.2% in 2011/12 and in the upper cycle of primary education (grade 5 – 8) from 37.6% to 48.1% during the same period. Overall, the NER for primary education (Grade 1–8) increased from 77.5% in 2005/06 to 85.4% in 2011/12. The primary school attendance ratio has risen from 30.2% in 2000/01 to 64.5% in 2010/11. The increase in attendance was disproportionately higher for children from rich families at 70% compared to 52%
for children from poor families.

Most of these children dropout of school after grade five although dropout rates have been declining. For example, the completion rate in lower primary education rose from 69.1% in 2010/11 to 73.8% in 2011/12 and is expected to increase further as government accelerates implementation of interventions aimed at increasing enrolment and educational progression of children from poor families and thereby helping to break the yoke of inter-generational poverty among poor households. To be effective, these programs also need to focus on improving the quality and standards of education at all levels and across the country.

Targets for MDG2
  1. Ensure that, by 2015, children everywhere, boys and girls alike, will be able to complete a full course of primary schooling
    • Net enrolment ratio in primary education
    • Proportion of pupils starting grade 1 who reach last grade of primary
    • Literacy rate of 15-24 year-olds, women and men