News: Education and Somalia

Somali Education Leadership — Can Abaarso be an example?

Repost from Horn Diplomat

POUGHKEEPSIE, NY – A conference held at Marist College, Poughkeepsie, NY during 8-9 June 2019 covered variety of issues related to Somali/Somaliland education leadership.
The conference was the first annual conference dedicated to Somali educational and economic development. This was a unique opportunity for academics and practitioners to  in   the education to share  ideas and  experiences. The main focus was on  the realities of on-the-ground development. The discussion were focused on the potential solutions to longstanding development challenges. Many recent graduates from the Abaarso School in Somaliland, very highly motivated energetic group were in attendance.
Among the speakers at the conference were;
  • Edna Adan, Founder of Edna University Hospital
  • Mohamed Gouled, International Finance Corporation’s Vice President of Risk and Finance
  • Mohamed Ibrahim, Somalia’s former Minister of Posts and Telecommunication
  • Professor Ahmed Samatar, Dean of the Institute for Global Citizenship at Macalester College
  • Anne Dix, Director of USAID’s American Schools and Hospitals Abroad
  • Bashir Goth, Somaliland Representative to the United States
  • Jonathan Starr, Founder of Abaarso School, Co-Founder of Barwaaqo University
The conference covered areas of leadership, education, and development in Somalia and Somaliland in the form of  important areas speeches, workshop and interactive session.
The founder of Abaarso school, Jonathan Starr, welcomed the delegates and informed the attendees the importance of education and leadership. Due to the interest showed and high number of attendees, Mr Starr indicated that this conference will become a yearly event. He also joked about the possibility of one day inviting the top Somali  and Somaliland leader to attend this event and debate their differences with the intention of finding long lasting solution.
Speaking to Hiraan online, Mr Starr hinted that while it is difficult to replicate the success of abaarso,  other format can be implemented in Somalia.
Ms Edna Adan, founder of Edna University Hospital gave a very comprehensive and emotional speech which covered the history of her involvement in the Somali and Somaliland health sector. Her coverage of the Somali and Somaliland womens’ health, especially in the area of FGM has created a lot of interest and left a profound impact on the conference attendees.
The Abaarso students in USA got an opportunity to meet and exchange ideas during the event. They have also showcased their skills and commitments.



Global Partnership for Education launches US$17.9 million grant for the Federal Government of Somalia

Repost from Global Partnership for education


School girls in Somaliland. Credit: UNICEF/Hana Yoshimoto

Mogadishu, Somalia 29 October 2018 –

— The Global Partnership for Education (GPE) is pleased to announce a US$17.9 million grant for the Federal Government of Somalia. The grant will be implemented by the Federal Ministry of Education, Culture and Higher Education to address crucial education needs and priorities identified in the Education Sector Strategic Plan (ESSP) 2018-2020. The grant will help more than 32,000 out-of–school children to go to primary school and get a quality education, strengthen the capacity of the Ministry of Education Culture and Higher Education (MOECHE) at the federal level and in Member States and support monitoring, accountability and communication across the education system.

The European Union is the GPE coordinating agency for Somalia and CARE USA is the GPE grant agent for this grant.

Undoubtedly, the sustained support from GPE is highly appreciated and will go a long way in providing the opportunities for much needed equitable access to education for the benefit of the Somali children,” said Somalia’s Minister for Education, Culture and Higher Education, Hon. Abdullahi Godah Bare. “It will also help us to create the conditions to improve the quality of education in Somalia’s education institutions,” he said.

Education is essential to alleviate poverty, build peaceful societies and promote social inclusion,” said Alice Albright, Chief Executive Officer, Global Partnership for Education. “That’s the basis on which GPEcontinues to prioritize and support education in Somalia. The program we are launching today will be the foundation to improve and expand education and enhance the capacities of the Ministry and Member States. We look forward to further strengthening our partnership and implement the Education Sector Strategic Plan for the betterment of Somalia’s greatest resource – its children.”

CARE’s Acting Country Director, Abdullahi Iman stressed: “With this significant education support from GPE, key education infrastructure will be established, professional development of teachers supported, prescribed textbooks procured and distributed and the capacity of the Ministry of Education and member states improved.”

The program also includes measures for children with special needs, children from pastoralist communities and girls from vulnerable and disadvantaged backgrounds.

Somalia has been a GPE partner country since 2012. In 2013, Somalia received its first GPE grant of US$14.5 million for the period 2013 to 2016. The current support of roughly US$33 million covers all regions, with US$5.6 for Puntland, US$9.6 for Somaliland and US$17.9 for the Federal Government of Somalia. In August 2018, GPE communicated that Somalia is eligible for an additional US$51.8 million. The Minister of Education, Culture and Higher Education of the Federal Government of Somalia received this “as a welcome move not only for the government but also for all education stakeholders in Somalia as it would synergize the efforts of other donors, such as the European Union, United Kingdom Department for International Development, USAID, UNICEF and the World Bank.”

About the Global Partnership for Education

The Global Partnership for Education (GPE) works with developing countries to ensure that every child receives a quality basic education, prioritizing the poorest, the most vulnerable and those living in countries affected by fragility or conflict.  GPE mobilizes financing for education and supports developing countries to build effective education systems founded on evidence-based planning and policies. Its partners include developing countries, multilateral organizations, donors, the private sector, teachers, civil society/NGOs, and private foundations.

For more information visit and follow us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram

Contact: Alexandra Humme

About the Ministry of Education, Culture and Higher Education

The MOECHE is responsible for all matters pertaining to the development and delivery of education services. This includes policies on education, curriculum development, and national examinations at all levels of education, certification, supervision of schools and all educational institutions, monitoring and evaluation. This is in line with MOECHE national development plans, which the Education Sector Strategic Plan is aligned and contribute to.

For more information and to arrange interviews, please contact:

Ministry of Education, Culture and Higher Education (MOECHE)

Mr. Hasan Mohamed Ali, Director General, email:

About CARE in Somalia

CARE (Cooperative for Assistance and Relief Everywhere) is a major international humanitarian agency delivering emergency relief and long-term international development projects. Founded in 1945, CARE is nonsectarian, impartial, and non-governmental. It is one of the largest and oldest humanitarian aid organizations focused on fighting global poverty. In 2016, CARE reported working in 94 countries, supporting 962 poverty-fighting projects and humanitarian aid projects, and reaching over 80 million people and 256 million people indirectly.

Contact: Iman Abdullahi

Global Partnership for Education launches US$17.9 million grant for the Federal Government of Somalia
Regions and Countries:Sub-Saharan AfricaSomalia

Somalia shakes up its education system after years of being wrecked by conflict

Repost from Thier World 

AUGUST 21, 2018

Somalia’s education system is undergoing a major transformation

— Photo credit: UN Photo


Structure, term times, text books and even the language of teaching have all been changed to bring about a “Somali-owned system”.


Around the world, children are going back to school and happy to be in a familiar setting.

But for Somalia’s students, things have been looking very different as they return after the summer break.

Wholesale changes have been made to the education system in a country ravaged by civil war, where three million children are out of school and 70% of the population are under 30.

Somalia’s education system has been lacking a unified approach for decades. Now there will be a single system of four years in lower-primary school, four years in upper-primary and four years in secondary.

In comes a new curriculum, with a system of continuous assessment and information and communication technology added to the core subjects. The school year has been divided into two terms – running from January to May and August to December.

Students will get access to education as well as opportunities where they can exploit their individual talents

— Photo credit: AMISOM

But possibly the biggest change faced by millions of Somali children is the language used to teach them. Until now, schools affected by the conflict and shortages of supplies have used whatever text books they can get – from as many as 10 other countries. This led to English and Arabic being the major teaching languages.

“Now the language of instruction in primary school will be Somali, while Arabic and English will be used in secondary school,” said Abdulkadir, a former Director-General in the federal Ministry of Education. “We believe this will bring some order.”

The man overseeing the education system overhaul is Mohamed Abdulkadir, an advisor to the government’s ministry of education.

“For the last 30 years, the country has been craving for a Somali-owned and Somali-prepared education system – we finally have it,” he said.

“Our aim is to ensure our children access to education as well as opportunities where they can exploit their talents for their benefit and that of the country.”

The country has over three million children out of school, according to UNICEF in June, and one in five are displaced from their homes.

Years of internal conflict virtually wrecked the education system. It is “characterised by poor-quality, insufficient numbers of qualified teachers and inadequate resources,” said the United States Agency for International Development (USAID).

Almost 50,000 children lost the opportunity to go to school due to displacement between November 2016 and August 2017.

A recent study by the humanitarian organisation Mercy Corps showed that children at school in Somalia are much less likely to support armed groups than those missing out on education.

“We found in general that the provision of secondary education by itself reduced the likelihood of young people supporting political violence by roughly 48%,” said senior researcher Beza Tesfaye.