Education in DRC: 20 key figures

Education in DRC, children from EP LundaBEST OF 2016 – Teachers, funding, insecurity, impact… Education in DRC, all the facts and figures you need to know*. 

Primary education

3 out of 10children do not complete primary school
1 |  3 out of 10 children do not complete primary school. 30% of children leave school between 1st  and 2nd year, 20% between primary and secondary schools.

2 |  6 out of 10 girls complete primary school, compared to 8 out of 10 boys.

|  7 out of 10 children are not enrolled or have dropped out of school because their parents can not afford to pay the school fees.

|  44% of new entrants to 1st year of primary school are more than 6 years old. Their late school entry increases the risk of dropping out.

|  Girls of rural and uneducated parents are at the highest risk to never go to school (33%).

|  The distance is a marginal factor: 84% of children have a school close to home.70% of children 6 to 11 years not attending school live near a school.

|  Almost all schools (95.5%) offer 6 levels of primary education, thus there is the opportunity to complete this cycle.

As part of the UNICEF/OCHA RRMP response to displacement in Mulamba, South Kivu, RRMP partner AVSI held a 4-day teacher amongst local schools, including E.P. Chiboba (pictured), where 95 of the 370 students were from displaced families, and gave $1,140 as the first part of 2 vouchers provided for improving the school structure. RRMP partner IRC constructed two blocks of latrines at E.P. Chiboba.

Financing of the education sector

3 quartersof education expenses are borne by households
|  Public funding for education remains modest 15% in 2012 93% of these expenditures go to wages.

|  Households contribute to 3 quarters of education spending, the state 1 quarter, which reveals the crushing weight of education for families.

10 |  Half of the staff of the educational system is not paid 42% in the primary schools, 87% in preschool.

11 |  Students in public schools perform better than those in private schools in general, but it is the opposite for girls.

The impact of education in DRC

12 |  Education has a direct and positive impact on maternal and child health. It reduces the number of children per woman, and reduces the risk of falling into poverty.

13 |  The higher the level of education, the larger is the impact. The 1st cycle of secondary school  has  the best cost / benefit ratio, we must encourage children to accomplish it after  primary school.

14 |  The longer a person stays in the school system, the more they benefit from the public investment in schooling.

UNICEF DRC 2013 Pudlowski Day of the Girl


27%the proportion of women working in primary education
15 |  The teachers are inadequately trained, and there few women and older. Women hold only 27% of the positions of the primary schools and 11% of secondary schools.

16 |  93% of primary teachers are qualified, but in the secondary schools, only 17% are skilled, and most have no training.

17 |  The educational system is poorly equipped to facilitate conflict resolution. Only 2 out of 10 teachers are trained.

UNICEF_DRC_2013_Pudlowski_day01 0261 640x427


65%of school children live in provinces with conflicts
18 |  Conflicts have a significant impact on primary school completion. 65% of children aged 6 to 11 years are out of school in six provinces in conflict.

19 |  More than 1 student in 4 does not feel safe at school.

20 |  87.5% of children in the Kivus and Orientale Provinces have received humanitarian assistance for their education.

Education in DRC: RESEN, the reference

  • These figures come from the second State Report by the Democratic Republic of Congo’s National Education System (RESEN).

RESEN is a performance analysis of the Congolese education system in its entirety, from pre-school to higher education. It provides an overview of the state of education in the country, the progress that has been made as well as the challenges that remain to be addressed with a view to achieving universal access to quality education.

Education in DRC: going further

All our articles about education in the DRC. 

Photos 1 and 2: UNICEF DRC 2013 Brett Morton

Photos 3 and 4: UNICEF DRC 2013 Julie Pudlowski

Translated from French by Alison Bentley.

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Yoon Jeong

Yoon Jeong Na est Chargée de Reporting du Programme Education de l’UNICEF en RDC. En travaillant avec les collègues aux niveaux National et Provincial, et en faisant des visites régulières sur le terrain, elle s’assure que les documentations sur la situation et les besoins des enfants en RDC sont communiqués et soumis à temps. Émue par la résilience des enfants même dans les situations les plus drastiques, elle croit que les enfants ont un rôle important à jouer et doivent être écoutés.

Yoon Jeong Na is the Education Reporting Officer of UNICEF in the DRC. By working with colleagues at the national and provincial levels, and doing regular field visits, she makes sure that the documentation on the situation and needs of children in the DRC are communicated and submitted on time. Moved by the resilience of children event in the most drastic situations, she believes that children have an important role to play and must be heard.

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