In Sudan, recently displaced Grade 8 students battle the odds

News and Press Release
Originally published

Children across Sudan are now taking their grade 8 exams starting March 5th, a key prerequisite to receiving the Basic Education Certificate.

Since January, an escalation in violence in Jebel Marra has reportedly triggered new displacement of over 90,000, 68% of whom are children. This is a scale unprecedented in a decade. Education sector partners estimate that there are now over 6,626 emergency affected eighth graders (58% girls) whose chances of taking the Grade 8 final exams are at risk for reasons entirely beyond their control. Without urgent support, ensuring adequate preparation and access to examination centres, these children will not be able to complete their basic education.

UNICEF and partners are supporting the State Ministries of Education in Central, South, and North Darfur states through the provision of essential school supplies (notebooks, stationary, tarpaulins and plastic mats), sanitary supplies and meals. Temporary latrines and sanitation facilities have also been set-up in the five examination centres in Nertiti, Rokero; Kabkabeya, Kass, and Mershing. These centres will enable 6,437 recently displaced grade 8 children to take the exams.

In a joint effort of co-ordination and advocacy between State Ministry of Education (SMoE) and UNICEF, newly displaced children from Central Darfur are able to sit their exams In North Darfur, where SMoE has established an examination centre in Kabkabiya town and for which logistical support is provided.

UNICEF is further supporting 2,338 grade 8 children in Zam Zam camp and Korma town to sit their exams in centres in El Fasher, North Darfur.

Education can be a normalising force in children’s lives and is a right that should be sustained for all children, both girls and boys, even under the most difficult of circumstances. Without support, Grade 8 students would not be able to graduate from basic education, which would deny them the opportunity to pursue secondary education, putting them in double jeopardy.

For further information, please contact:
Alison Parker, Chief of Communication, UNICEF Sudan, +249-(0)912 – 179 -116,