• Home
  • News
  • EI Africa launches the Go Public! Fund Education Campaign in Monrovia – Liberia

EI Africa launches the Go Public! Fund Education Campaign in Monrovia – Liberia

Go Public! Fund Education Campaign

The National Teachers Association of Liberia (NTAL) and Education International (El) Africa  held a  two-day  workshop  aimed at reviewing the state of education in Liberia in relation to the achievement of   Sustainable Development Goal 4  aimed at ‘ensuring inclusive, equitable quality education and promoting lifelong learning opportunities for all’. The  forum brought together NTAL leadership led by the president, Mary Nyuma,  the labour centre , classroom teachers from both public and private schools,  parents, students and a host of other education stakeholders from Liberia including civil society organisations.
In her opening remarks, the NTAL president noted that  education in Liberia was under resourced, making it difficult for the teachers to deliver. Citing the role of the union,  the president explained that the union had the responsibility to advocate for her members to have good working conditions, including the provision of adequate materials to facilitatequality teaching and learning. Citing the  lack of commitment on education by the government, the president explained that lack of seriousness was eminent  considering that there has never been a programme for Early Childhood  Education (ECE)  in Liberia.
In his opening remarks, the EI  Africa Regional Director,  Dr. Dennis Sinyolo, told participants about global commitments on education agreed in 2015  aimed at transforming the world by ending poverty, inequality, protecting the planet and ensuring health, justice and prosperity.  It was therefore critical that teacher unions and education stakeholders guard the success of SDG 4. including  holding governments responsible for  ensuring that children are taught by well-trained, professionally qualified  and motivated teachers.   
During the presentation on the state of education in Liberia, it was noted that  the government of Liberia was spending  only 2.6% of the Gross National product and 13.8% of the National budget on education.  The  government had continued to outsource the  education system to private providers through the  Partnership  Schools of Liberia (PSL) programme, which started in 2016  and metamorphosed to  the Liberia Advanced Education Programme (LEAP). The governments had currently outsourced 300 schools to Bridge International Academies and  was paying the teachers teaching in  those schools. Considering  to an earlier study done by ActionAid and Education International,  it was clear that the current education dispensation in Liberia was creating inequality through privatisation  and commercilisation of education.   
There was consensus  among stakeholders that the public schools were under resourced, with severe teacher shortages. It was noted that teacher training had declined since 2016. Most of the teachers were untrained, and some schools were run by volunteer teachers who hoped to one day be  put on the government payroll. The average class size was  80, making it difficult for teachers to deliver effectively . Liberia had remained at the bottom on performance in the West African  Examinations Council (WAEC) ranking. 
It is against this background that Education international,  NTAL and the education stakeholders in Liberia have put in place a  strategy to relaunch the Global Campaign against privatisation and commercilisation of education which has since been combined with the new EI campaign ‘Go public! Fund Education’, launched on January 24, 2023. This aims at putting pressure on governments  to rally resources to adequately fund education. 
At the end of the workshop the stakeholders shared concern that the country’s resources were mismanaged  resulting in the deplorable conditions at schools and general life in Liberia. They pledged to join  the EI/NTAL campaign, ‘Go public! Fund Education.