What is Girls’ Education South Sudan?

Girls’ Education South Sudan (GESS) is a six year programme – April 2013 to September 2018 – that aims to transform a generation of South Sudanese girls by increasing access to quality education.


South Sudan, the newest country in the world, has some of the lowest educational indicators, with education of girls being among the lowest. Very few girls who begin primary education continue to secondary school; in 2016, 128,000 girls started primary school, but only 2,700 completed secondary school. GESS is determined to change this, so that all girls can go to school, stay in school and achieve in school.


There are many barriers (cultural, financial, poor infrastructure/quality) that are preventing girls from going to school. The GESS programme works closely with the Ministry of General Education and Instruction (MoGEI) to realise its strategic objective of eliminating barriers to girls’ education and promoting gender equality throughout the education system.


How will this be achieved?

GESS has been designed as a practical programme that removes barriers that prevent girls from going to school. In South Sudan, a girl can face many barriers when she wants to go to school: her family may not be able to pay for her education, or may think education for girls is not very important. Once enrolled in school, she may still not learn because teachers and school management are not trained very well.


Girls’ Education South Sudan implements activities that tackle these financial, cultural and quality barriers to education for the girl child. Boys will also benefit from an improved learning environment.


The activities are structured along three main outputs:

  1. Enhanced household and community awareness and empowerment for supporting girls’ education through radio programmes and community outreach.
  2. Effective partnerships between GRSS and local organisations to deliver a community-based school improvement programme which will include: a) Cash Transfers to girls and their families; b) Capitation Grants to schools; c) provision of practical support to schools, teachers and education managers to improve the quality of education.
  3. Increased knowledge and evidence available to policy makers of what works to promote girls’ education in South Sudan.