Transforming education in Sao Tome and Principe

São Tomé and Príncipe has improved school enrollment, with 93% of school-age children enrolled in 2017 compared to 56% in 2008. However, strong inequalities (location, special needs and gender) and the poor quality of education continue to be challenges that affect children and the development of the country's human capital.

An analysis by the World Bank in 2021 indicates that almost a fifth of poor families (18%) had to withdraw their children from school due to their inability to pay the costs related to education.

The government is working with GPE and other partners to strengthen the education system to improve quality and equity in learning. As outlined in São Tomé and Príncipe's Partnership Compact, the curriculum will be updated to include gender-responsive and inclusive pedagogy and emphasize development of socioemotional and digital skills. New teaching and learning materials will support curriculum implementation.

Efforts to reduce education barriers for vulnerable children include exempting poorer families and girls from having to pay school tuition fees and implementing programs to mitigate learning loss and school dropout.

Better education system data and monitoring will help improve management of financial, human and material resources, which is critical to São Tomé and Príncipe achieving the large-scale change needed to deliver quality education to all children.

Result story

Sao Tome and Principe: School meals encourage children to return to school

In Sao Tome and Principe, school closures due to the COVID-19 pandemic have had far reaching impact on children beyond the direct disruption of daily schooling. They left many children who rely on schools for food security in a highly vulnerable situation. See how the country is working with partners like GPE to support programs that encourage children to return to school.


(data as of July 15, 2024)

  • Type: Program development

    Years: 2024

    Allocation: US$199,000

    Utilization: 0

    Grant agent: WB

  • Type: System capacity

    Years: 2023 - 2025

    Allocation: US$699,652

    Utilization: US$248,793

    Grant agent: UNICEF

  • Type: Program implementation

    Years: 2021 - 2024

    Allocation: US$2,500,000

    Utilization: US$2,056,775

    Grant agent: WB

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