The education system in the DRC, the Democratic Republic of the Congo
Education lasts about 12 years In the Democratic Republic of the Congo, or DRC, DR Congo, or Congo-Kinshasa, This is from the beginning of primary school to the end of secondary education.
The school year begins in September and ends in June. Universities, begin their academic year in October and end it in July. Each course at a university lasts one academic year.
The DRC education system benefits primary schools. In primary school, non-academic courses take precedence over academic courses. Secondary school curricula are more academic. The DRC wants to make the school curriculum more Afrikaans. They want to learn more about local history and culture. And also to promote the study of African languages. Students are still eager to learn French and English for self-improvement. The school models of Belgium and France influence the school curriculum of the DRC.
Schools use local languages as the medium of instruction, especially in primary school. It could be one of the four big ones: Kikongo, Lingala, Tshiluba, and Swahili. But also one of the hundreds of living languages in DR Congo. French is the official language of instruction, especially past primary school.
Kindergarten is two years in DRC. It’s for ages 3 to 5 years old.
In DR Congo, in primary school, the average age of admission to the school is 5 and a half years. There are six degrees in primary education. There are two preparatory classrooms, two elementary classes, and two medium classes.
Secondary school can take up to five or six years to complete. Secondary school can be general or technical. Five years is for technical secondary school. Six years is for general secondary school. They both split into two age levels. The lower level is for two years for pupils aged 12 to 14 years. The higher level is for four years for pupils from 14 to 17 years old or up to 18 years old.
To be admitted to a university, secondary school students must pass a national exam, or “diplôme d’etat”. They must pass with a minimum score of 50 percent. Once they are enrolled at a university, students must pass a final exam. It is an essay on each topic taken, as well as an oral exam. If students fail, they can resume the course by continuing it for an additional year. A college student must write and defend a dissertation to obtain a license.
Students can go from primary to vocational schools instead of secondary school. They do it because of their interests and academic achievement. They can participate in up to 5-year programs in various trades and crafts. In the end, they will get patent proof.
How is education in the DRC?
The quality of education is mediocre. This is also due to the circumstances in which these students study. But above all, it is because of the qualifications of the teachers. They are too few for the number of students. They are not well trained and they are underpaid. Many Congolese teachers have noticeable shortcomings in almost all subjects.
Five out of six pupils in primary schools cannot read a simple text in French. It is getting worse in rural areas. Only one in ten boys can read in French. And only one in twelve girls can read in French.
Do girls go to school in DR Congo?
Many young girls leave school at the end of primary school and during the first years of the secondary cycle. Half of the girls under 19 left school. This is due to early marriage and early and unwanted pregnancies,
Is school free in the DRC?
No, even if free school is a DRC government goal. The DRC is still unable to provide universal primary education. The average annual school fees per child range from $ 25 to $ 35 for primary school and $ 30 to $ 50 for secondary school. Money is a significant obstacle to obtaining an education. Parents bear a large portion of a child’s educational fees.
What is the literacy rate in the Democratic Republic of Congo?
Three out of four Congolese citizens over the age of 15 can read and write. The literacy rate is higher for men and lower for women. Nine out of ten DRC men can read and write. While only 67 percent of women, six or seven out of ten women, can read and write.
The cove image is somewhere in the Democratic Republic of Congo. photo: Unsplash