Ghana has highest basic school completion rate in West Africa

PupilsGhana is the only country in West Africa and one of only three countries in sub-Saharan Africa to have achieved a completion rate of at least 95 per cent in primary education, according to World Bank data.

Botswana and Kenya are the only two other countries to have achieved this feat in sub-Saharan Africa.

The World Bank’s world development indicators show that as of 2014, the primary education completion rate among males in the basic school age group was 97 per cent.

The primary completion rate for boys was 73 per cent as at 1999.

For girls in the basic school age group, the completion rate at 2014 was slightly lower – 96 per cent – but still a significant improvement from 64 per cent back in 1999.

The data shows, the general basic education completion rate in the period 2010 to 2014 was 101 per cent for Ghana, 100 per cent for Botswana and 104 per cent for Kenya. The percentages in this development indicator which is also known as the “gross intake rate to the last grade of primary education”, are capable of exceeding the 100 mark due to under-aged and over-aged children who enter school early or late, and pupils who repeat grades.

The figures also suggest Ghana is inching closer to gender parity in basic education completion.

As at 1991, the gap in the completion rate between boys and girls was 9 percentage points but has been reduced to 1 percentage point as of 2014.

The improvement is situated within an improvement in the primary completion rate in sub- Saharan Africa, which the World Bank says made the most rapid progress during the past decade: The primary completion rate for the region increased by 15 percent, to 69 percent as of 2013.

By Emmanuel Odonkor

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