School resources and academic performance in Sub-Saharan Africa

Other title(s): School resources and academic performance in Sub-Saharan Africa

Author(s): Lee, Valerie E.; Zuze, Tia Linda

Organisation(s): Comparative and International Education Society (USA)

Date: 2011

Pages: p. 369-397


We investigate links between students' achievement and several resource inputs in African primary schools, using data from the 2000 Southern and Eastern Africa Consortium for Monitoring Educational Quality (SACMEQ-II). We focused on four sub-Saharan countries that had in place legislation mandating free and universal primary schooling: Botswana, Malawi, Namibia, and Uganda. Using multilevel modeling (hierarchical linear models), we found strong links between material and human resources and grade 6 students' achievement in reading and mathematics. Structural features such as school shifts and school size were negatively associated with achievement, although effects varied across countries. We discuss policy implications of our findings within each country's educational context.

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