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Educational system in Uganda: Fundament for the future
The school life of a Ugandan child starts with the Ordinary School (P1-P7 classes), followed by the Secondary School (S1-S4 classes) and ends with the Advanced Secondary School (S5-S6 classes) where he/she receives a high school certificate.
There are three types of schools:
1. Government Schools
The Ordinary Schools are free of charge, so that every child is guaranteed a minimum education. Nevertheless, every child is expected to pay an amount of $10 to the school and the parents have to pay for learning material as well, which remains a heavy burden for many.
The Secondary School fees amounting to 200 to 600 Euros. The better the school, the higher the fees! Since even 200 Euro per child is to much for an average family, most children leave school after the P7 class.
2. Missionary Schools
Fees are charged for these schools as well, but they also offer scholarships. So even children from poor families get access to important basic school education.
3. Private Schools
These are considered to be the schools with the best quality. The teachers earn high wages and the paying parents keeping a close eye on the education their children receive. This of course has its price and is unaffordable for most Ugandans.
The school year is divided into trimester (February to May, May to August, September to November) with small breaks in between. The exams take place in December, followed by long holidays until the beginning of February.
The largest and most popular one is the Makerere University in Kampala with 33,000 students (July 2007) and 22 academic units. In the 50's and 60's she was called University of eastern Africa and had an excellent reputation, which suffered immensely during the years of civil war. The present problems resemble those of Europe: Due to under-funding the quality of training and the satisfaction of students and lecturers is suffering.