- About 20 percent of the children who had completed seven years of primary school could not read their own language, Kiswahili, at the Grade 2 level;
- Half of them could not read English, which is the medium of instruction in secondary education;
- And about 30 percent could not do a simple (Grade 2) multiplication problem.
Interestingly, Tanzania has seen dramatic increases in primary school enrolments—so much so that the country won a Millennium Development Goals award for achievements in primary education.
To better understand the relationship between these different findings, I interviewed Rakesh Rajani of Twaweza, the NGO that conducted the survey, on the margins of the Open Forum at the recent World Bank-IMF Annual Meetings.
We discussed why and how they did the study, what the results mean, and what to do with them.