Alpha Dia, Burama Jammeh, Dayo Odukoya, Yves Benett, Cheikhou Touré


This article is about the first part of a two-part Feasibility Study which originated in Bamako, in 2012, with initially four countries participating (Gambia, Guinée-Bissau, Nigeria, and Senegal). Later on, Guinée-Bissau withdrew from the group. Many young people in West and Central Africa leave school without having learned skills important in the work place. Arguably, such poor preparation for the world of work may be traceable in part, to how the Pre-Vocational (PV) school curriculum policy is implemented in Upper Basic Schools (UBS). The issuing Research Question then was: in what ways can the curriculum for UBS leavers be improved in order to enhance their employability during their last years at school? The general research objectives were to study the extent to which the current PV curriculum for UBS leavers was relevant to their employability and to introduce into the PV curriculum an innovative relevant Programme of Study. The present article refers to the first objective only and is essentially about a Baseline Survey of the employability of UBS leavers and of the deficiencies in the current PV school curriculum regarding their employability. Relevant research tools were developed and the main findings were that across the three countries, the teachers were aware of the concept of employability and of deficiencies in the PV curriculum regarding the employability level of the UBS leavers. Substantial proportions of UBS leavers in each country were not at an appropriate level of employability, with Senegal obtaining the highest average score for a Students’ Competency TEST across the three countries (41% of the maximum possible total score). Also, the students’ overall performance in the TEST masked some significant results for the individual TEST items. Appropriate actions were recommended for both the immediate future and the long term.


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employability, upper basic school leavers, Gambia, Nigeria Senegal

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DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.46827/ejes.v0i0.1614


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