Association for Free Research and International Cooperation

National school year-end examination in Africa

Article from AFRIC Editorial
Conventionally, an academic year begins from August, September or October and ends in May, June or July respectively. In some Southern African countries, it begins in January or February and ends in October or November. The academic year 2018/2019 is near end and has been successful for many African countries, except for a few such as Libya, South Sudan, Northern Nigeria, Western Cameroon, Liberia and Somalia.

Education is of great value globally but not all continents have full opportunity to education; Some parts of South/East Asia, Latin America and Africa are still facing limitations; war, hunger, diseases, disasters, poverty and racial differences.

What African students should do and not do

A 21st century students have better learning conditions which should boost their learning abilities. This is the period when students who shall sit for end of course examinations (common entrance examinations, general certificate of education examinations, semester examinations and postgraduate thesis defenses) show more consciousness.

At a personal level at this point of the academic year, African students should;

  • Make sure their notes are up to date, add the number of hours for study and do more research.
  • Draw private study timetables.
  • Follow up tutorials, do summaries, write short notes and revise past questions while studying.
  • Take short breaks when studying, sleep for at least 6 hours in the night, rest for at least 1 hour during the day to avoid fatigue and keep the brain active.
  • Eat at least three times daily and drink at least 3 liters of water daily; and avoid too much protein food in the morning because it causes sleepiness because it requires intensive digestion and metabolism.
  • Do less strenuous physical excises to avoid injuries and ensure good blood circulation.
  • Avoid using stuffy or enclosed or unventilated rooms.
  • Avoid the consumption of illicit drugs because they slow down the brain’s speed of reasoning, reduce the level of information assimilation and weaken the body.
  • Spend less time chatting and fraternizing on social media.
  • Avoid noisy environments.

African countries that have experienced irregularities during the current academic year


The commencement of the academic year in Libya was uncertain began on October 7th a month late in some parts of Libya due to the ongoing unrest. After donations from the UNCHR, the Ministry of Education instructed some regional education monitors to decide on a date to reopen schools especially in the Eastern town of Derna which only started in December.

South Sudan

South has experienced conflict for years now just after her independence in 2011. As a result, many have lost interest in school and are fleeing the country for food, peace and security. The current academic year began in September instead of August and has been going on smoothly though about 55% of students have not registered for school this year. The National Examination Council (NEC) complained of in sufficient funds and equipment to properly run their activities and urged the Government to provide enough on time.


The ongoing armed conflict began in the English speaking western regions of North West and South West in late 2016 as peaceful protests staged by Lawyers and teachers for a better working and a constitution that respects common law. The government responded violently with military crackdown by security forces which led to many deaths. This sparked an armed conflict between armed groups advocating for separation and State military. Schools were interrupted in almost all rural areas and some urban towns of these two regions. These armed groups keep attacking, kidnapping and molesting teachers and students from schools. Cases of students shot and killed in cross fires between the State military and separatists have been reported. More than a 1000 nursery, primary, secondary, high schools and some private universities have been permanently closed and some burned. However, the academic year which began on September 11th in the whole nation, began timidly in NW and SW although frequently interrupted posing challenges to students preparing for public examinations.

Northern Nigeria

Nigeria the most populated country in Africa has experienced many crisis in the Northern parts inhabited by the Muslim majority; affected by many decades of terrorism, economic crises, poverty, ethnic, racial, religious and cultural differences. Boko Haram terrorist group continued kidnapping of school children while the Muslim Fulani herdsmen majority attacked and slaughtered many of the farming Christian minority over grazing land. These led to the closure of schools. According to UNICEF, almost 3million students need education in the states of Borno, Yobe and Adamawa and about 410 schools have remained locked.

Zimbabwe, Democratic Republic of Congo and Liberia

These three countries have experienced economic crises and many disease outbreaks within the last 5 years; EBOLA, BIRD FLU, CHOLERA and MISEALS; especially Liberia. After the flood in Zimbabwe, cholera broke out killing many. Teachers in Zimbabwe before the academic year commenced, staged a series of sit-down strikes for better salaries and working conditions; thus schools were halted and the resources for education used to fight diseases. In DR Congo, the 2019 pre-election period was predominated especially in the East by political instability from opposition parties interrupting the smooth running of the school year.

Somalia, Chad, Guinea-Bissau and Togo

These three countries are currently experiencing a high level of corruption, poverty, crime wave, drug trafficking perpetrated by armed gangs flooding their streets who terrorize the common people on daily bases. This insecurity delayed the start of the current academic year. In Chad, rebels from Libya and Boko Haram terrorists keep infiltrating the communities along the borders to loot and abduct young boys and girls into the sect, forcing many to migrate southwards leading to the closure of many schools this academic year. Togo’s constitution saga caused by their President Faure Gnassingbe resulted to the whole country unanimously agreeing to halt school for some months.

Article from AFRIC Editorial

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