print-only banner
The White House Skip Main Navigation
In Focus
News by Date
Federal Facts
West Wing

 Home > News & Policies > June 2002

For Immediate Release
Office of the Press Secretary
June 20, 2002

Fact Sheet: Africa Education Intiative
Africa Education Initiative

Presidential Action

Today at the Leon Sullivan Summit in Washington D.C., the President will announce a doubling of funds for the African Education Initiative announced last July, bringing our total spending to $200 million over the next 5 years.

Improving Africa's Education

African children are the future of the continent. Their education is key to future economic growth and lasting democracy, leading to greater stability and improved standards of living. The current state of education in Africa, however, is plagued by a lack of funds, teachers, textbooks, and transparency. Consider:

  • Primary school enrollments and literacy rates in Africa are among the lowest in the world.
  • 42 million school children in sub-Saharan Africa are not enrolled in school.
  • Many children cannot afford to go or stay in primary school.

The multi-year basic education initiative, Strengthening Basic Education in Africa, provides needed training and materials to both teachers and students. With this additional funding, many African students will receive textbooks written in their local language and girls will receive scholarships covering the cost of tuition. Likewise, new and existing teachers will receive the needed training to educate children more effectively.

photo This Initiative will provide $200 million to:
  • Train more than 160,000 new teachers and provide in-service training for more than 260,000 existing teachers
  • Partner with historically black colleges and universities in America to provide 4.5 million more textbooks and other learning tools for children in Africa;
  • Provide 250,000 scholarships for African girls;
  • Increase the role of parents in their children's education by working to make school systems more transparent and open to reforms from parents; and
  • Bolster our commitment to basic education in Africa which totals $630 million over the next 5 years
  • .