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Abstract

This study analyzes the reasons why the Makuyuni parents of Northern Tanzania do or do not enroll their children in school. Ten Focus Group Discussions (FGDs) and several key informant (KI) interviews were conducted in the Mswakini Juu and Makuyuni villages. The parents who participated in the FGDs all had children in primary school at the time of interview. The findings revealed that reasons for enrolling these children in school included future economic stability for the family, government policies enforcing parents to enroll their children in primary school, partnership with World Vision, increased physical accessibility to education, and the World Food Program (WFP) which supplies food for all primary schools in the district. The findings also exposed hindrances to primary school enrollment including protection of tradition and culture, females marrying at a young age, and inability to afford extra scholastic expenses. This study suggests that increased commitment to education would benefit the Maasai people by better equipping them to secure and maintain employment. Other suggestions presented include better preparing children for primary school and sensitizing Maasai leaders to the benefits and realities of education. [PUBLISHER ABSTRACT]

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