Private Education and Compliance with the Abidjan Principles
A Study of Malawi, Mozambique, Tanzania, and Nigeria
This report analyzes selected features of the private provision of schooling and its regulation in four countries – Malawi, Mozambique, Tanzania, and Nigeria. It considers these against the standards laid out in the Abidjan Principles (AP), guiding principles on the human rights obligations of States to provide public education and regulate private involvement in education. The AP were adopted on 13th February 2019 in Abidjan, Côte d’Ivoire by a group of human rights experts from around the world, following a three-year participatory consultation and drafting process. They unpack and compile existing provisions in international human rights law and provide guidance on how to put them into practice in the context of the rapid expansion of private sector involvement in education. They provide a framework for evaluating forms of private provision, giving attention to how this can be assessed in relation to states’ obligations as regards to the right to education. Comparisons and contrasts between the four countries are highlighted in this report.
This study uses the AP to describe and evaluate private schooling in Malawi, Mozambique, Tanzania, and Nigeria. It analyses whether the approach to private education in each country is consistent with the expansion and support for public education by the State, and considers whether discrimination and segregation are outcomes associated with forms of private provision that detract from states’ human rights obligations to provide free, quality public education. The study also looks at approaches to the regulation of private providers in each country and how effectively they have been implemented. As the AP give very clear guidelines regarding regulation, we use these to read and assess the forms of regulation currently in place.