Out of school rates for primary school children have nearly halved since 2000 and there has also been a slower, but significant, decline at the lower secondary level. Despite this, out-of-school rates at all levels remain high, particularly at the pre-primary level, where coverage is almost negligible.
In total in 2012, 87,399 children were out of school from pre-primary to lower secondary, including 34,739 primary school aged children (37%) and 33,651 lower secondary school aged children (48%).
At particular risk of being excluded from school are: nomads, poor, internally displaced people, refugees, the homeless, girls and children affected by conflict and natural disasters. Some of these at risk populations are not Djiboutian nationals and therefore not being given priority.
Poverty, particularly among families who rely on children either for generating additional income or to help with house chores.
Low quality of education and facilities, including overcrowding in classes.
Social attitudes that see no or limited value in education, particularly for girls. This is compounded by the low quality of education on offer in some cases.
Preschool education is not compulsory and in addition, services are almost entirely private and fee paying and found only in Djibouti City.
There are few services for disabled children, and disabilities are often undiagnosed.
Some children lack birth certificates, particularly in rural areas and among immigrant and refugee groups.
POLICIES AND STRATEGIES
The education strategy 2010-2019 aims to strengthen education quality, improve access capacities and reinforce institutional management.
Public or community-based preschool education programs being initiated with the Education Action Plan 2014-2016.
Since a large portion of the state budget is already allocated to education, new interventions targeting marginalized populations must be highly cost-effective.
Non-formal education centers provide education to homeless and other vulnerable children who have passed the entry age to primary education, or those without birth certificate.
The Ministry of Education is currently building and renovating classrooms, and also piloting special education classes.
There is a monitoring system for children with educational difficulties that should reduce drop out.
Article 14 of the General Education Law, states that children regularly residing in the Republic of Djibouti should be in school (irrespective of their residential or other status).
Social support being provided to reduce the cost of education for families (school kits).
- Improve the collection and sharing of population data among government, multilateral agencies and other stakeholders. This should better reflect the educational situation of refugees and mobile populations.
- Ensure than planning is based on all available information with published medium-term spending frameworks and up-to-date budget requests.
- Publish available information on disabilities in order to assist with social mobilization; improve data on this issue, including through systematic tests at the start of the first school year; and redeploy trained teachers to classes with disabled children.
- Implement Article 14 of the General Law. This includes considering informal education for children living and working on the streets and developing special measures to be piloted among nomadic populations.
- Reduce or remove birth registration fees, simplify procedures and set up mobile courts to improve access.
- Continue to further promote the quality of education which would promote the social representation of education.
- Insure that more priority is given to the more underserved and vulnerable population groups.
The Djibouti Country Report will be uploaded at a later date. For further information, contact UNICEF Djibouti.
Data and charts
Numbers and percentages of out-of-school children (2000-2013)
Classification of the out-of-school population (Dimensions 2 and 3) by school exposure
Out-of-school children by background characteristics (Dimensions 2 and 3)
- UNESCO Institute for Statistics country profile
- Global Partnership for Education country profile
- Education Policy & Data Center country profile
- World Bank Djibouti overview
- UNESCO IIEP Pôle de Dakar country profile
- Djibouti Education Sector Plan 2011-2019
- Djibouti Education Implementation Plan 2014-2016
- World Bank - Access to Quality Education Project
- World Bank SABER Country Report on teachers
Stories & News
Hibo holds her flower-patterned schoolbag very tight to her chest, like a precious treasure – and, for her, it really is. This is the first year in which this 10-year old girl living in Ali-Sabieh, a region in southern Djibouti, has had the chance to go to school. No one else in her family ever has – although she is the second youngest out of seven brothers and sisters.Read more >
Fatouma’s outlook on life has flipped 180 degrees. Over the past three weeks, she has been waking up with a new objective: sit in a classroom and learn. This 7-year old with big almond-shaped eyes is part of a group of 85 students aged 6 to 11 years old who are attending the first school ever to exist in Garabitsan, a hard-to-reach village in Tadjourah region, Djibouti.Read more >
The thermometer reads 44ºC when Madina steps out of the classroom. School has finished for the day for this 12-year old girl from Sankal, a remote village in Dikhil region by the Djibouti-Ethiopian border. It is 12.30am and the sun is scorching, but Madina spends a dozen minutes more chatting to her friends before going back to her toukol, the hut made from branches and covered in woven mats where she lives with her parents and six siblings.Read more >