Education in Zambia

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The interior of a rural Zambian primary school

Lower education in Zambia is divided into three levels; primary, junior, secondary and upper secondary. Higher education is very limited and centred on the six universities of Zambia: University of Zambia, Copperbelt University, Zambia Open University, Cavendish University, Zambia Adventist University and Northrise University.

Primary and secondary education[edit]

Private, government and community schools exist in Zambia only in eastern province

The majority of Zambian pupils attend government schools, which are nominally free for Grades 1-7, although parents may have to pay 'contributions' or buy uniforms from the school.

Community schools are run by the community and the teachers work there voluntarily or for small stipends, unless these schools are sponsored by charities. Some community schools charge significant fees and resemble low-end private schools, but most are very cheap and cater to pupils for whom the local government school is too far away or imposes unaffordable costs such as uniforms.

The private school system began largely as a result of Christian mission efforts during the late 19th and early 20th centuries. Private schools operate under either the British or American way of schooling.

With the exception of a few top private schools, Zambian schools are chronically under-resourced and educational standards extremely low.

Schooling falls into the following levels:

  • Lower Basic, grades 1-4
  • Middle Basic, grades 5-7
  • Upper Basic, grades 8-9
  • Secondary, grades 10-12

Traditionally, grades 8-9 were part of secondary schooling, but these are often now taught in upgraded primary schools, known as "basic schools". This allows pupils unable to access secondary school to continue their schooling up to Grade 9, and provides primary schools with additional income (as government schools are allowed to charge fees to Upper Basic pupils).

Higher education[edit]

In Zambia, there are three universities and several technical schools that provide higher education. The Ministry of Science Technology and Vocational Training (MSTVT) in Zambia was also developed in 1992 to foster growth in technological fields. Educational opportunities beyond secondary school are limited in Zambia. After secondary school, most students study at the various colleges, around the country. Normally they all select students on the basis of ability; competition for places is intense.

The introduction of fees in the late 1990s has made university level education inaccessible for some, although the government does provide state bursaries. Copperbelt University opened in the late 1980s, taking over most of the former Zambia Institute of Technology site in Kitwe. There are also several teacher training colleges offering two-year training programmes, while missionary hospitals around the country offer internationally acceptable training for nurses. Several Christian schools offer seminary-level training.

There are three main universities and several others:

Additional Centres of Higher Education:

Support from charities[edit]

Cecily's Fund is one of the supporters of education in Zambia, funding the school courses of over 11,000 children (as of June 2010).[1] The charity also fully funds Bwafano Community School in Lusaka.[2]

Camfed supports girls and young women in Zambia.

Bakashana provides support to young women from rural Zambia by contributing educational opportunities, school support & resources.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ CAF helps Cecily's Fund to support children orphaned by AIDS, Charities Aid Foundation. Retrieved 2010-06-08.
  2. ^ Cecily's Fund: What We Do. Retrieved 2010-06-08.

External links[edit]


Mulungushi University in [Kabwe]

  • mukuba university(kitwe)
  • nkruma university(kabwe)