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Achieving Universal Primary Education: Can Kenya Afford it?

Author

Listed:
  • Rob Vos

    (Institute of Social Studies, The Hague)

  • Arjun Bedi

    (Institute of Social Studies, The Hague)

  • Paul K. Kimalu

    (Kenya Institute for Public Policy Research and Analysis)

  • Damiano K. Manda

    (Kenya Institute for Public Policy Research and Analysis)

  • Nancy N. Nafula

    (Kenya Institute for Public Policy Research and Analysis)

  • Mwangi S. Kimenyi

    (University of Connecticut)

Abstract

Kenya has experienced a rapid expansion of the education system partly due to high government expenditure on education. Despite the high level of expenditure on education, primary school enrolment has been declining since early 1990s and until 2003 when gross primary school enrolment increased to 104 percent after the introduction of free primary education. However, with an estimated net primary school enrolment rate of 77 percent, the country is far from achieving universal primary education. The worrying scenario is that the allocations of resources within the education sector seems to be ineffective as the increasing expenditure on education goes to recurrent expenditure (to pay teachers salaries). Kenya's Poverty Reduction Strategy Paper (PRSP) and the Economic Recovery Strategy for wealth and Employment Creation (ERS) outlines education targets of reaching universal primary education by 2015. The Government is faced with budget constrains and therefore the available resources need to be allocated efficiently in order to realize the education targets. The paper uses Budget Negotiation Framework (BNF) to analyze the cost effective ways of resource allocation in the primary education sector to achieve universal primary education and other education targets. Budget Negotiation Framework is a tool that aims at achieving equity and efficiency in resource allocation. Results from the analysis shows that universal primary education by the year 2015 is a feasible target for Kenya. The results also show that with a more cost- effective spending of education resources - increased trained teachers, enhanced textbook supplies and subsidies targeting the poor - the country could realize higher enrolment rates than what has been achieved with free primary education.

Suggested Citation

  • Rob Vos & Arjun Bedi & Paul K. Kimalu & Damiano K. Manda & Nancy N. Nafula & Mwangi S. Kimenyi, 2004. "Achieving Universal Primary Education: Can Kenya Afford it?," Working papers 2004-47, University of Connecticut, Department of Economics.
  • Handle: RePEc:uct:uconnp:2004-47
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    File URL: http://web2.uconn.edu/economics/working/2004-47.pdf
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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Mwangi S. Kimenyi & Germano Mwabu & Damiano Kulundu Manda, 2006. "Human Capital Externalities and Private Returns to Education in Kenya," Eastern Economic Journal, Eastern Economic Association, vol. 32(3), pages 493-513, Summer.
    2. Geda, A. & de Jong, N. & Mwabu, G. & Kimenyi, M.S., 2001. "Determinants of poverty in Kenya : a household level analysis," ISS Working Papers - General Series 19095, International Institute of Social Studies of Erasmus University Rotterdam (ISS), The Hague.
    3. Arjun S. Bedi & Paul K. Kimalu & Damiano Kulundu Mandab & Nancy Nafula, 2004. "The Decline in Primary School Enrolment in Kenya," Journal of African Economies, Centre for the Study of African Economies (CSAE), vol. 13(1), pages 1-43, March.
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    Cited by:

    1. Ruerd Ruben, 2012. "Dimensionner l'aide au développement : ce que nous enseigne l'évaluation. Dimensioning Development Aid: Some Lessons from Evaluation," Revue d’économie du développement, De Boeck Université, vol. 20(4), pages 95-123.

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • I22 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Education - - - Educational Finance; Financial Aid
    • C53 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Econometric Modeling - - - Forecasting and Prediction Models; Simulation Methods
    • H40 - Public Economics - - Publicly Provided Goods - - - General

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