THE West African country of Togo has reached its highest record of enrolment at primary education level at 94 percent, placing the country among the West African Economic and Monetary Union (WAEMU) states with the highest schooling rate.
According to local media reports on Friday, in the WAEMU economic category, the small country has the highest completion rate in primary education, reported the website Togo First.com.
According to a statement by the education ministry, the uptick in enrolment and completion of primary education can be attributed to initiatives such as free preschool and primary school fees, health insurance, the school canteens, as well as exemptions from exam registration fees.
The Togolese Presidency said that investment in the education sector is close to the heart of the Togolese government, and enormous initiatives have been taken to ensure quality education for all learners in recent years.
‘School canteens are also a salutary action in favour of public primary schools in Togo. The idea is to offer learners in vulnerable areas one hot meal a day,’ said the Presidency in a statement.
According to officials, the school feeding scheme that was implemented in 2008 has provided meals to more than 97,000 learners at a cost of nearly $40 million.
The Togolese government said that this initiative has also contributed to the improvement of the enrolment rate and remains a brake on drop-outs in Togo.
‘More than 315 schools are beneficiaries. The programme is to be extended to nearly 600 other schools,’ said the statement.
Furthermore, the Presidency said that in addition to these investments, the government has set up health insurance in public schools.
The health insurance initiative which was started in 2017 has recorded a total of 2,546,131 free care sessions for students in consultations, analyses, pharmacies, hospitalisations and surgeries, the statement said.