Primary education in Guinea is compulsory for 8 years. In 1997, the gross primary enrollment rate was 54.4 percent and the net primary enrollment rate was 41.8 percent. Enrollment remains substantially lower among girls than boys. In 1997, gross female enrollment was 40.7 percent, compared to 67.7 percent for boys. In 1999, primary school attendance was 40 percent. One girl attends school for every two boys. Children, particularly girls, are kept out of school in order to assist their parents with domestic work or agriculture. Government resources for education are limited, there are not enough school facilities to adequately serve the population of school-age children, and the availability of school supplies and equipment is poor.
In 1990, the Government of Guinea initiated an education sector reform program to increase enrolment, particularly for girls, and to improve education services. As of 2001, the reform program was ongoing, and the government was continuing to commit funds for educational improvements.
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