Good education is one of the basic human rights that governments around the world owe to their citizens. It’s the focus of the UN’s 4th SDG
Africa has one of the fastest growing populations in the world with an annual population growth rate of nearly 3 per cent over the last 20 years. More than 60 percent of the continent’s population is below 25 years old and the continent’s birth rates remain one of the highest in the world. By 2050, Africa’s current population of one billion would have more than doubled to 2.3 billion
This trend clearly shows an explosive demand (now and in the future) for education. And with the current situation of many government-owned educational institutions, it will be impossible to provide basic (and higher) education to Africans without the support of private businesses and organisations
Many Africans (young and not-so-young) strongly appreciate and understand the value of education and its power to lift them out of poverty
Both Africa’s rich and poor are investing huge amounts of money in their personal and children’s education
In sub-Saharan Africa school fees consume more than a quarter of a poor family’s income, covering not only tuition, but also indirect fees (such as membership of parent-teacher associations, community contributions, textbooks and uniforms).
However, due to the poor reputation of public schools, more parents are enrolling their children in paid private schools even where government schools offer free education.
Low-cost private schools, like the Omega chain of Schools in Ghana and Bridge International Academies in Kenya, are spreading across the continent in response to the huge and fast growing demand for quality education.
Omega Schools is a private primary school chain targeted at the poor in Ghana. The school runs a low-cost primary education model where parents can pay their children’s school fees on a daily basis (‘pay as you learn’).
With a daily school fee of $0.75 and more than 15,000 pupils spread across several of its schools in Ghana, Omega is making money from educating a large number of poor children at a very low price.
The Omega school model is a very practical and lucrative model that can be adopted across Africa.
This is the same business model used by Bridge International Academies in Kenya which charges a $5 school fee per month
Do you agree that business has a key role in education provision?