Performance in Mathematics and Science Subjects: A Gender Perspective for Selected Primary Schools in Rural and Urban Tanzania
Samwel J. Kabote, Elliott P. Niboye, Carolyne I. Nombo

Since the 2000, Tanzania is striving to eliminate gender inequality in the education system. As such, the gender gap in enrolment is closing in primary education. Yet, gendered performance remains a challenge. Using data from Primary School Leaving Examination results for the period between 2007 and 2011, and from qualitative methods, this paper examined trends and factors for poor performance in Mathematics and Science subjects with a gender perspective. Two schools from rural and two from urban areas were involved in the study. The results did not show a clear trend in Mathematics performance in rural relative to urban schools, which showed a clear decreasing trend. On the other hand, performance in science was decreasing in rural schools and in one of the urban schools. There was also lower girls’ performance in both subjects with some few unique cases. Secondly, the gender inequality was more prominent in rural relative to urban schools because of a number of overlapping factors including lack of female teachers role models and lack of an appropriate school environment for girls. Therefore, to tackle gender inequality in performance, rigorous efforts need to consider multiple, but interlocking factors with a gender lens, while considering rural-urban differences.

Full Text: PDF      DOI: 10.15640/ijgws.v2n3a6