Non formal Education (NFE) is defined as a practical and functional mix of fundamental literacy, numeracy and skills for life. It focuses on community or district-based programs that engage out-of-school youth in learning in order to prepare them to improve their life opportunities and/or successfully enter high growth occupations and careers. The Ministry of Education’s department of Non-Formal Education (NFE) seeks to foster lifelong education and support services. It provides services for youth/adult learning, girls/women’s learning spaces and family learning centres that enable individuals to access education in various life skills that equip them with the ability to generate sustainable and healthy livelihoods, while developing as informed and skilled citizens.
Currently the Non-Formal Education Program operates without training manuals or standardized curriculum. A lot of capacity strengthening is required. The NFE department in order to ensure delivery of quality education and training services needs to develop its capacity and human resources. This includes the development of rural educational strategies programs and improvement of advanced level of NFE linkages to the other education subsectors, establishment of an equivalency certification system and Institutionalization of NFE teachers and provision of in-service teacher training on regular basis. There are a total of 260 NFE centres across Somaliland with which the MOES is involved. The following Table about the regional NFE Enrolment between the years 2014 and 2015 is the only available data according to the monitoring reports collected by the Ministry of Education and Higher Studies in collaboration with all stakeholders/ partners.
Non-Formal Education Key Challenges
The key challenges in the NFE subsector are summarized as follows:
- Just like most other subsectors, financial resources, especially from public funding remain insufficient. This, coupled with inadequately trained personnel, tends to lower the quality of education services in NFE facilities
- The NFE subsector does not have an up-to-date comprehensive policy that will guide and facilitate the running of the sector and ensure that the sector imparts life skills to learners who did not have a chance of formal education.
- As currently equipped, NFE facilities have limited learning materials to support learning especially in life skills training and in particular equipment for practical learning.
- There are gaps regarding awareness of the NFE programme among the Somaliland communities and the important role it plays in imparting basic literacy and numeracy skills to learners.
- The Ministry is facing challenges in the implementation of Family Education Centres (FLECS) due to limited resources.
- There is lack of data and documents regarding the achievements of teacher recruitment, selection, training and development. There is also a shortage of relevant educational materials including textbooks and supplementary reading resources, particularly in the rural learning canters. The EMIS does not incorporate the NFE subsector.