Education In Yemen [Archives:2004/764/Education]

August 16 2004

By Mutawakil Al-Dhubibi
For the Yemen Times

In Yemen the education system has seen considerable progress compared with that during the days of Imam. In that ear, there were not any schools and universities and people were only educated in mosques. Also at that time, few people were interested in studying and almost al women were forbidden to study. Now there are a number of schools and some universities, in addition to many others in the private sector such as institutes for learning foreign language and computer skills. Furthermore, both men and women are keen on learning, and illiteracy has been eradicated to a considerable extent.
Unfortunately there are still shortcomings in the education system in Yemen which need to be addressed. For instance, the huge number of students in classes at school. In some classes there are about a hundred students, therefore it is difficult for a teacher to do his or her job efficiently even if he or she is a sound professional and has a good manner of teaching. In such classes students do not have the opportunity to take part in the lesson activities and to practice what they have been taught in the class. In addition to that, there is a lack of educational aids used in teaching such as, TV, radio, and computers.
Furthermore, cheating in exams has become a common phenomenon among students that indirectly affects not only the students' performance and knowledge but also the society as whole. Because, students can not be well educated, they may finish school with empty minds.
Although there has been an increase in the number of students at University, some fail to get any jobs and other graduates wait for years to get jobs in the government sector. Due to that, many students lose confidence and decide not to continue study after secondary school. This would consequently lead to a generation ill equipped for the modern world. Unfortunately the government chooses to bring in foreign teachers, who are paid much more than what Yemeni teachers are paid rather than use the money to ensure that Yemeni teachers are paid sufficiently well to motivate them.
The government should set up more schools and provide all facilities to enable teachers to offer students with better tuition. Also, it should help graduates to get jobs so as to reduce the level of unemployment.