Ethiopia: A Country Education Profile (Fact Sheet)
1,251,280 Sq. Km
Amharic (official), Oromigna, Tigrigna and 80 other major languages are spoken. English,French, Italian and Arabic are also widely spoken.
The dominant religions are Ethiopian Orthodox and Islam. Judaism and Animism are also practiced in some parts of the country.
Major Industrial Products: food and beverages, textiles, leather, cement, metal products, paper, plastic products, automotive and tractor assemble, tires etc
Major Agricultural Products
: coffee, tea, oilseeds, cotton, tobacco, fruits, pepper, sugar cane,fish and livestock.
coffee, oilseeds, hides and livestock.
machinery and equipment, industrial inputs, pharmaceuticals and chemicals.
The country has the highest number of livestock in Africa, is the third largest coffeeexporter and has immense potential for mining (gold, tantalum, platinum, petroleum, coal andnatural gas). The country is endowed with abundant water resources and hydropower, geothermal,and solar energy potential. It has great potential for a strong labor force as about 50% of the population is in youth age category.
The history of Ethiopia, known to many as Abyssinia, is rich, ancient, and still in part unkown.The first hominid remain known as “Lucy” ( 3.2 million years old) were found in Ethiopia. Ethiopianhistory is rich with legends of King Solomon and the Queen of Sheba. Ethiopia is the only African countrynever colonized by any European country. In fact, Ethiopia defeated Italy at the Battle of Adwa (1896),making the first victory of any African nation over a European colonial power.
Ethiopia has a base of traditional education (church) with its own script which is veryelaborate and complex. The development of modern education in Ethiopia is at an early stage. The literacyrate at present is one of the lowest in Africa and is estimated at 50 %. In 1999 there were about 9.6 million primary, 3 million junior secondary and 5.7 million senior secondary school students.
First Cycle Primary Schools, Grades 1-4:
Children enter primary school at various ages because of theagrarian nature of the economy and the possibility of transfer from traditional church or mosque educationto modern education. Teaching is in the Mother Tongue for the majority of children depending on their regions. English is taught as a foreign language. There are about 15 Teacher Training Institutes and thereis a plan to increase TTIs through distance education, correspondence etc.
Second Cycle Primary Schools, Grades 5-8:
Admission to first and second cycle primary schools is opento all students. Usually schools combine the two cycles in a compound. A substantial number of teachersare certified by going through a one or two years teacher training scheme. There are 8 Teacher TrainingColleges for this cycle of teachers.
Primary enrollment is about 50%.Secondary Schools:
At the end of the second cycle of primary education all students in all regions are