What next for Liberia’s controversial education experiment?

By Sophie Edwards /

Students reading books at a school in Brewerville, Montserrado County, Liberia. Photo by: GPE / Kelley Lynch / CC BY-NC-ND

LONDON — A controversial education partnership in Liberia has been given a new name and the green light to continue for another school year by the country’s new government — but with longstanding donors yet to commit to more funding, the program’s future remains in doubt.

The Partnership Schools for Liberia program has seen 200 primary schools contracted out to private education providers over the past two years and has sparked fierce debate, both domestically and internationally, over the role of for-profit companies in education.

It was unclear whether the program would survive a government transition in January. However, in August, after months of silence, the Liberia Ministry of Education announced it would continue PSL for at least one more year under a new name: The Liberia Educational Advancement Program, or LEAP. It will not expand the program for now, whereas the previous government had overseen a rapid scale-up.

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About Cholo Brooks 16873 Articles
Joel Cholo Brooks is a Liberian journalist who previously worked for several international news outlets including the BBC African Service. He is the CEO of the Global News Network which publishes two local weeklies, The Star and The GNN-Liberia Newspapers. He is a member of the Press Union Of Liberia (PUL) since 1986, and several other international organizations of journalists, and is currently contributing to the South Africa Broadcasting Corporation as Liberia Correspondent.