Education in Nigeria

Nigeria is the largest country in Africa in terms of population and has approximately 20% of the total out–of-school children population in the world. Adding to this challenge is the demographic pressure with about 11,000 newborns every day that overburdens the system capacity to deliver quality education.

In the Northern part of Nigeria, almost two-thirds of students are functionally illiterate.

The states of Jigawa, Kaduna, Katsina, Kano, and Sokoto have shown commitment to improving their education systems, but they face severe challenges including high poverty levels, low enrollment, gender disparities, poor quality and relevance, poor infrastructure and learning conditions.

Blogs and news

Children using the talking pens and books from Mavis Computel in Lagos, Nigeria. Credit: Mavis/Computel
May 14, 2019
A good example of how technology and innovation can help improve education.
Nasiba Alhassan, 12, (center) is in Grade 5 at Miga Central Primary School, Miga, Jigawa State, Nigeria. Credit: GPE/Kelley Lynch
April 15, 2019
The Global Partnership for Education Secretariat has approved grants totaling nearly US$2.4 million to support education sector analysis and planning, as well as education program development in 7...
Young girl in front of primary school, Nigeria. Credit: GPE/Kelley Lynch
March 05, 2019
Under a GPE grant, Kano State in Nigeria started the disbursement of N1.5 billion in scholarship to 34,698 schoolgirls in the state to improve access to quality education. The governor called on...

Latest grant

Overcrowded classrooms and broken infrastructure at Janbulo Islamiyya Primary School, Roni, Jigawa State, Nigeria

CREDIT: GPE/Kelley Lynch
Development objective: to improve access and quality of basic education in selected states, with particular attention to girls’ participation.
Grant agent:IBRD

The GPE grant of US$100 million is supporting the Nigeria Partnership for Education Project (NIPEP). The project primarily focuses on supporting the five states mentioned earlier in the implementation of their education sector plans.

The three main components supported by the GPE grant are:

  1. Improving the effectiveness of schools and learning outcomes by providing grants to support school improvement plans and teacher professional development.
  2. Supporting the inclusion of girls in basic education and promoting gender equality through providing cash transfers to encourage girls' participation, scholarships for women to attend colleges of education, capacity-building and operational support on issues affecting girls' retention and gender sensitivity.
  3. Supporting robust monitoring and evaluation, regularizing the annual assessments of student learning, and financing impact evaluations of school improvement grants and girls' scholarship programs.

The federal ministry of education and the ministries of education of the five selected states lead the program in partnership with the World Bank as the grant agent. DFID is the coordinating agency.

Source: World Bank project appraisal document. May 2015


All amounts are in US dollars.

Grant type Years Allocations Disbursements Grant agent  
Program implementation 2015-2019 100,000,000 80,232,857 IBRD Progress report
Sector plan development 2013 249,900 232,961 IBRD Progress report
Program development 2013 480,000 476,992 IBRD Progress report
  TOTAL 100,729,900 80,942,810    

Education sector progress

The graphs below show overall progress in the education sector in Nigeria. Download this PDF to view the country’s progress on 16 results framework indicators monitored by the GPE Secretariat.


Primary completion rate (%)

Lower secondary completion rate

Out-of-school rate for children of primary school age

Out-of-school rate for adolescents of lower secondary school age

Pre-primary gross enrollment rate

Gender parity index for out-of-school rate – Primary and lower secondary

Public expenditure on education as share of GDP (%)

Students/trained teacher ratio

Teachers trained (%)

Source: World Bank - Education Data
Data on education are compiled by the United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) Institute for Statistics from official responses to surveys and from reports provided by education authorities in each country.

Last updated May 15, 2019