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The literacy rate among Mbuti Pygmies is the lowest in the world.  Most Mbuti Pygmies have never been to school – ever in the history of their existence.  But this is changing for some of those we have come in contact with.

Pygmy girls very rarely make it to 4th grade.  In fact most Pygmy boys and girls have never been to school and never will.  Many of those who attend school still cannot say their “A, B, C’s” even after years of attendance.  The reasons are many and varied.  School fees of $13 per trimester and money for clothing are not possible for most Pygmies to pay.  Many report, “another sleepless night without food” which forces the choice of searching for food that day or going hungry all day.  Also, Pygmies have seasons of hunting and fishing which disturb their education.  With all these and other reasons, passing an exam to the next level is a great feat worth celebrating.