The World Bank and Morocco inked on Thursday in Rabat a $500 million loan agreement destined to support the country’s pre-schooling and basic education, key for socioeconomic development and inclusive growth.
The WB loan will enable the Moroccan government to improve the quality of preprimary education, enhance the skills of teachers of basic education and foster the governance of the sector.
To achieve these goals, Morocco is expanding access to quality early childhood education (ECE) and pledges to universalize preprimary education by 2027, support the teachers and upgrade their training because a stronger teaching profession yields better learning outcomes.
This strategic vision, which is based on a participatory approach, aims to strengthen the education sector’s management capabilities and accountability along the education service delivery chain.
In July last year, Morocco launched a $3 billion program to promote early childhood education, dubbed the national preschool generalization and development program.
The program aims to ensure schooling for 700,000 kids every year, to create over 57,000 classrooms, mobilize 56,000 teachers and train 27,000 teachers by 2028.
It is also meant to reinvigorate traditional preschool education programs which serve over 460,000 children and unify standards at the national level.
According to official statistics, only around half of the Moroccan kids benefit from preschool programs, and there are significant disparities between urban and rural areas.
In a message read at the launching ceremony of the program, King Mohammed VI had stressed that early childhood education must become compulsory for the state and the family. Any reform should be based on this solid foundation, since early education enables children to acquire mental and cognitive skills and abilities that ensure smooth access to learning and success in school, the Sovereign had underlined.