Home Institution

Boston College

Publication Date

Spring 2012

Program Name

Senegal: National Identity and the Arts


For my independent study project I examined the possible reasons for the current state of the education system in Senegal. Focusing on the primary school level, I explored what factors contribute to the low levels of achievement currently in the schools of Dakar. To help me do this, I observed and participated in the everyday lives of children at École Primaire Sainte Bernadette, a local private Catholic school. I studied socioeconomic status, student to teacher ratio, curriculum, the importance placed on education in the culture and communities I stayed in, and how these factors affect the quality of education children are receiving. I also focused on the possible benefits of attending a private Catholic school and what the teachers, administrators, parents, and students at École Primaire Sainte Bernadette are doing to counteract the difficulties they face in primary education each day. Through my research, I found teacher quality, reliability, and discipline to be the main factors leading families to enroll their children in a private Catholic education


Curriculum and Social Inquiry | Disability and Equity in Education | Educational Sociology | Inequality and Stratification