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Opportunities in Egypt’s Education System

Syrian children have been given access to Egypt’s education system but in 2016 there has not been enough development in schools. Read more.

April 28, 2017

Egypt’s education system is undergoing a small revolution. Recent developments in government funded schools have given Egypt’s population access to the Japanese system of “Tokubetsu Katsudo (Tokkatsu)”, or, Whole Child. Rather than focussing solely on academics the Japanese school system includes moral and emotional teachings, the aim being to foster a balanced mindset.

The rollout of the Japanese method is expected to take a few more years, but the excitement it has caused has created an immediate opportunity in education. Even though the changes are occurring within the government school system, the adoption of new practices shows a willingness to develop and has created curiosity within Egypt’s population. This curiosity may spur demand for specialist private schools as parents research options outside of the traditional system.

In addition to a change in the mindset of residents, the private education sector could be seen as an answer to the question posed by an estimated 500,000 Syrian refugees (as of Dec 2016). Syrian children have been given access to Egypt’s education system but in 2016 there has not been enough development in schools to create half a million more spaces. There is more demand than supply. Comments made by Egypt’s assistant foreign minister Hisham Badr allude to approximately five million migrants in total now residing in Egypt. Whilst it could be assumed that the majority of migrants have moved to Egypt for a better life, it can equally be assumed that not all refugees arrive with nothing. Displaced Syrians who sought our private education in Syria would likely do the same in Egypt.

Our research shows that by 2020 the MENA region will need 1,100 more schools, 424 of those will be required in Cairo alone. We expect 68 of these schools to be private. With 28% of Egypt’s population aged 5-19 the demand seen is not short term. Egypt’s educational sector has built approximately 4,500 schools since 2012 with the majority being public but it is widely recognised that more private schools are required.

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