The Mansa-Maru nursery school is located in the poor district of Ebo Town, the largest city of The Gambia, Serrekunda. The school has 3 classrooms and a nursery. There are 200 children on this school in the age of 4-5-6 years.
In The Gambia you don’t have to go to school if you can’t. The government builds schools but has too few resources to provide good schools and thus to get good results. Community schools have been built using public funds in order to eduacate as many children as possible. Most of these schools are in poor condition, especially the interior. Class is sometimes given from 80 to a 100 children at a time, in a small space without any school facilities.
The nursery school or kindergarten, provides education for children up to 7 years. This is set up by private initiatives of the population and built with donations and funds.
After 7 years the children go to a primary school which takes about 6 years. Many families can’t afford to pay school fees, which means that these children will have no education or only a portion of it. Especially children in rural areas do not have this opportunity because they are needed to work on the land and in the household.
Very few children go on to a secondary school because these school fees are even higher.