Quality and Access to Basic Education

Education empowers individuals to face the challenges of becoming productive citizens. In addition to its integral value for individuals, education is also a key determinant of health, population dynamics and economic development.

The widespread adoption of free primary school education has improved enrolment numbers even though governments are still struggling to meet the rising demands for schooling. The sudden increase in enrolment numbers has also led to a decrease in the quality of education offered. This decrease has been observed in poor performance of pupils in early grades and teacher’s limited knowledge on content and pedagogical skills.


Current Project


Understanding the Dynamics of Access, Transition and Quality of Education in Urban Areas (ERP III)

Program: Education

This is a cross sectional study that was conducted in seven slum sites spread across six towns namely Nairobi, Mombasa, Kisumu, Eldoret, Nakuru and Nyeri.  The purpose of the study was to examine the patterns of schooling and the quality of education received by children from urban informal settlements in Kenya.
The study tried to answer four broad questions: What is the impact of free primary education (FPE) on schooling patterns among poor households in urban slums in Kenya? What are the qualitative and quantitative explanations of the observed patterns? Is there a difference in achievement measured by performance in a standardized test on literacy and numeracy administered to pupils in government schools under FPE and non-government schools?


  • City Council of Nairobi, Education Department
  • Municipal Education Offices
  • District Statistical Offices of the respective towns
  • Village elders

Project Period

  • March 2011-March 2013

Project Funders

  • hewlet



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