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Public sector primary schools

Is EYL taught as an official part of the curriculum in public sector primary schools? Yes
When was it introduced?  Over 50 years ago, in Grade 3
At what age do students begin EYL? 8 (approximately) (Grade 1)
Have any significant changes in teaching EYL taken place since 1980? Yes, the starting age was lowered to Grade 1 in 1992
Is there any widespread teaching of English before the official starting age for compulsory EYL? No
How many hours a week/school year are officially allocated for EYL? 1 lesson of 45-55 minutes per day (The number of teaching weeks in a year is not stated.)
How many EYL teachers and students are there in the public education system? Not stated
Who does the EYL teaching?  The class teacher (85%)
Who is eligible to teach EYL in the public education system? Primary teachers are qualified to teach all subjects, including English, after 1 year of pre-service training
Nationwide are schools able to recruit enough EYL teachers? Yes, because primary teachers are trained to teach all subjects
What official guidelines exist for EYL teaching? There is a general syllabus produced by the Institute of Curriculum Research
Do EYL teaching materials have to be approved? There is only one approved book published specially for schools in each administrative district. Each district has a mandate to produce its own textbooks based on the general syllabus mentioned above.
What materials are typically used? Locally published textbooks for each administrative district
What other foreign languages are taught at primary level? Regional languages are now the medium of instruction for primary schools, so if students are not L1 speakers of the regional language they have to learn it. This applies to Amharic too - so students who do not speak Amharic have to learn it.
Are any changes in the provision of EYL planned or anticipated? There are plans that teachers may choose any published materials provided that they are within the school budget

Private sector primary schools

Is there a significant number of these schools? No

Private language schools

Is there a significant number of these schools? No

Private tuition for Young Learners

Is there private tuition for primary age children? Yes
How many Young Learners are involved? 2% (approximately)
What is the typical starting age for private tuition? Usually the same as for compulsory education
Why do parents use private tutors? They feel that English is important as it becomes the medium of instruction in secondary and tertiary education

Date information collected: 1999

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