Migration and education in West Africa
Background paper prepared for the 2019 Global education monitoring report: Migration, displacement and education: building bridges, not walls

Very little is known about the nexus between migration and education in West Africa. Indeed, the present report can be considered the first attempt to carry out a comparative study in this regard. Despite the scarcity of resources, a relatively detailed analysis of the level and conditions of access of child migrants/ foreigners to education is provided. At regional level, the study covers the ECOWAS framework of free movements. At national level, it treats of legal norms and policies governing both education and migration. Migration for the purpose of education including the practices of fostering of children in host families and Qur’ānic schools as well as student mobility is analysed. A section covers the concrete access to education of working children, refugees children and adolescents, stateless children and children at risk of statelessness, and children of transhumant pastoralist populations. An overview of the educational level of foreigners in West Africa is also provided. The paper concludes with policy and programmatic consideration for better leveraging migration and education for economic growth, social inclusion, peace and stability in West Africa.


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