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Schooling unaffordable: Sudanese parents keep girls at home

September 18 - 2016 EL GENEINA / EL GEZIRA
Girls in Khartoum (soschildrensvillages.org.uk)
Girls in Khartoum (soschildrensvillages.org.uk)

Education in Sudan seems to have become unaffordable for a growing number of people, with soaring prices forcing some parents to keep girls at home.

Mohamed Najmeldin, a father of four school-age children in El Geneina, capital of West Darfur, told Radio Dabanga that the prices of uniforms, school bags, notebooks, and pens are soaring.

“With the rapidly increasing food prices, many parents cannot pay the costs of schooling anymore. As a result, most parents who have more than three or four children are now keeping their daughters at home,” he said.

Najmeldin added that the schools themselves are having financial problems. “Most probably, the schools will not be able to rebuild the classrooms that collapsed because of the heavy rains the past months.”

He rejected the West Darfur government’s statement about the success of the last school year. “That is only propaganda.”

El Gezira

Saadia Abdelrasoul, a mother of six, reported from El Gezira state in central Sudan, that “Schooling has become affordable only to those with large financial resources.

“My diabetic husband is not able to work anymore. My eldest son left secondary school to earn money instead, sacrificing himself for his brothers.

“Yet, this is not enough anymore to cover all the schooling expenses. Apart from increased tuition fees and the crazy prices of school materials, the transportation tariffs are soaring as well.”


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