Tanzania has experienced robust growth over the past decade which remained at 7 per cent for 2018 and 2019, making the country one of the best economic performers in East Africa. With its aspirations of achieving middle-income status as per its Vision 2025, combined with a predominantly young population (aged 15 to 34 years) that is projected to increase from 18 million to 62 million by 2065, this presents a unique opportunity to leverage the skills, resources and capacities of millions of children and
adolescents. With the right government policies, investments and strong technical support, Tanzania’s children and adolescents can yield a ‘demographic dividend’ and contribute to this national vision. Schools for Africa (SFA) is a global initiative which
contributes to the achievement of quality education across sub-Saharan Africa, ensuring that all children, including the most remote and marginalized children, are learning and gaining the skills for succeeding in life and work. SFA convenes business, governments and individuals and has a proven track record in partnering with the private sector to achieve education results for children.

The challenges

Tanzania has the potential to be one of East Africa’s next remarkable success stories. While there are clear opportunities, there are also challenges, consistent with many experienced in sub-Saharan Africa, but significant to the country:

• Poor access to early learning opportunities, and low quality of learning outcomes – despite improved GDP per capita, funding for education is declining. With 42 per cent of its population under 15 years old, there is a dire need to for Tanzania to improve  uality education, especially the quality of teaching and the availability of teachers, if it is to capitalize on the potential of its adolescents;
• Indirect costs associated to education – although education provided by the government is free and compulsory, children still face significant challenges to attend school because of associated costs – such as books, school uniforms and transport;
• Persistent inequality – insufficient schools exist that provide for and include the most vulnerable such as girls, the poorest children, children with disabilities, and children living in underserved communities or in
rural areas;
• Violence against children remains a major concern – a 2009 survey suggested that 28 per cent of girls and young women aged 13 to 24 have reported experiencing sexual violence in childhood – a figure twice as high as that for boys, with teachers being
among the most culpable. Children with albinism are a particular target for violence.

Our response in Tanzania

We are partnering with the Government of Tanzania and partners from the public and private sector, is strategically responding to the challenges and opportunities in the country. Our partner UNICEF has a long track record of implementing education programmes in Tanzania that result in real and sustainable change for children. In four regions, over 262,000 pupils are now learning in child-friendly and stimulating learning environments provided with enhanced teacher, management and parent capacities through the national 3Rs programme. Given its success, this programme will be scaled up nationally as part of the Education Sector Development Plan. In 2017, close to 2,000 schools carried out interventions for girls’ empowerment, reaching 135,000 girls. They also introduced a new teachers’ code of conduct and communication tools aimed at the prevention of school dropout and the reduction of violence and abuse of children, especially girls, in primary schools. We supported the Government of Tanzania on the national inclusive education strategy to respond to the learning needs of vulnerable and marginalized children and adolescent girls and boys. The strategy aims to create safe schools that provide psychosocial support and guidance for vulnerable adolescent girls and boys, as well as ensuring that schools are inclusive of children with disabilities. In addition, the Peter Krämer Foundation integrated life skills competencies into the new curriculum, and has supported government to review and develop its life skills learning strategy.

Impact and results

With a long track record of designing and implementing education programmes that create a positive impact on children, Schools for africa (SFA) sustainably drives the quality of education in Tanzania. Specifically, by 2021 we and partners will:
• Improve equitable access to pre-primary learning opportunities in the most remote rural areas and provide access to nearly 2,500 pre-primary pupils, and an additional 1,429 standard 1 and 2 pupils (aged 8 to 9 years) in remote rural areas;
• Implement the national 3Rs programme to improve early literacy and numeracy for pre-primary and primary Standards 1 and 2 children;
• Carry-out equity-based secondary data analysis in 2019, develop and mobilize broad-based partnerships to keep adolescent girls in school and learning;
• Engage adolescents and young people to co-design, test and sell innovative solutions to problems affecting them, especially in making secondary education more responsive to the 21st-century needs of adolescents and young people;
• Ensure that out of the 4,198 out-of-school children with disabilities identified, 2,151 are enrolled in inclusive schools. In addition, a total of 800 teachers from 400 of the 2,080 targeted schools have been trained on inclusive approaches in favour of learners with disability;
• Strengthen Inclusive Education Strategy and costed operational plan, by investing in the capacities of teachers and schools in creating inclusive learning environments that will benefit children with disabilities from 2019;
• Enroll 10,000 out-of-school learners in cohorts of 5,000 and provide them with skills development opportunities to enhance their employability. Implementation research will accompany the delivery of the curriculum to generate data and evidence on  reas to improve before a scale-up plan is developed.