Education in Zambia

Joined Commonwealth: 1964

Population: 14,075,000 (2012)

GDP p.c. growth: 0.8% p.a. 1990–2012

UN HDI 2012: World ranking 163

Net primary enrolment: 97.9% (2012)

Adult literacy: 61.4% (2007)

Public spending on education was 1.3 per cent of GDP in 2008.

The Ministry of Education has initiated several projects supported by key cooperating partners to improve the delivery of quality education. The permanent secretary answerable to the Minister of Education is the Chief Executive of the Ministry of Education and is responsible for the management, coordination and overseeing of education services at all levels.

There are seven years of compulsory education starting at the age of seven. Primary school comprises seven years and secondary five, with cycles of two and three years.. Some 53 per cent of pupils complete primary school (2008). The school year starts in January.

Public universities include the University of Zambia (established in Lusaka in 1965); Copperbelt University (Kitwe, 1986); and Mulungushi University (Kabwe, 2008). There are a number of private universities, including Zambia Open University, which enrolled its first students in 2005 (2004, Lusaka); and Cavendish University (2004, Lusaka). Literacy among people aged 15-24 is 74 per cent (2010).