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Sao Tome and Principe Education Facts


The school system comprises two six-year stages. School duty applies to children between 6 and 14 years. Almost all pupils start school, but some drop out early. Around 80 percent continue to the higher stage, slightly more girls than boys.

State grants to the school system are not enough and the quality of education is low. Many teachers are uneducated and there is a lack of classrooms and relevant material.

  • COUNTRYAAH: Country facts of Sao Tome and Principe, including geography profile, population statistics, and business data.

Reading and writing skills are relatively high with African dimensions measured, 80 percent among young people and 70 percent on average among adults. Far more women than men are illiterate.

In 2014, São Tomé got its first university, when the country’s university of technology merged with some smaller institutions to the Universidade de São Tomé e Príncipe. There used to be a branch in the islands of a Portuguese university, Universidade Lusíada.

Many Tomeans have previously gone abroad to study further because there were so few opportunities for higher studies in the country.

  • Educationvv: Provides school and education information in Sao Tome and Principe, covering middle school, high school and college education.


Proportion of children starting primary school

96.1 percent (2017)

Number of pupils per teacher in primary school

31 (2017)

Reading and writing skills

90.1 percent (2012)

Public expenditure on education as a percentage of GDP

0.0 percent (2017)

Public expenditure on education as a percentage of the state budget

0.0 percent (2017)



New Army Chief

The country’s soldiers are given a new leader when Horacio de Sousa is sworn in as commander of the armed forces of São Tomé.


The army chief is forced to resign

The country’s army chief, Colonel Justino Lima, is forced to resign after a video on social media showed him and other high-ranking officers abusing a youth criminal.

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