Bujumbura, Burundi – Members of the Standing Committee on education, youth, sports and leisure, culture and communication of the Burundian National Assembly participated in a field visit and carried out a scientific assessment of the primary school system, from 27 October to 7 November 2014.
The activity – intended to contribute to the capacity building of parliamentarians in monitoring governmental action- took place in the framework of the AWEPA Programme with the Parliament of Burundi and was conducted in the provinces of Cibitoke, Makamba, Rutana, Gitega, Ruyigi, Cankuzo, Muyinga, Karusi, Bujumbura, Ngozi, Kayanza and Muramvya.
The educational assessment aimed to analyze the results of a law, implemented in 2013 regarding the organization of primary schools. It included several meetings with the local administrative and educational authorities from both public and private schools, as well as with some representatives of religious conventional schools.
For the year 2013-2014, they investigation focused on the number of classes in schools, the number of classes that were actually built or still under construction, the number of expected students, the reasons of student drop outs, the courses that were never taught although initially planned, as well as how the authorities deal with these issues. The main investigation points, for the year 2014-2015, were the number of students and teachers as well as the available school material, such as the ratio books per student.
The research showed that due to the enormous demographic changes in the country the educational reforms are difficult to implement. Especially when it comes to the construction of new classes, as sometimes there are classes with 150 students.