Monday, July 11, 2011

Children poorly taught in East Africa…

This week an article was printed in the Daily Monitor entitled ‘East Africa children poorly taught – a report’. To tell you the truth, it doesn’t surprise me.

IPEP has been working in northern Ugandan schools now for 2 years and we have seen the ins and outs that go on in primary education. Our staff has met with the Board of Education, the National Curriculum Development Board and many consultants involved in education here in Uganda. Unfortunately, the same conclusion always emerges; the education system in Uganda is failing more than succeeding.

The problem is not only in the classroom though; it is the entire structure of the educational system. Ugandan teachers are not supported and most of the time not respected. We’ve seen it time and time again where teachers do not receive their salaries, and yet they must stay or else they would be unemployed. When teachers are not paid, they are not motivated. Therefore, they tend to not show up for classes, do not prepare lessons, and do not really have a reason for working. The person that suffers the most in this situation is the student.

Daily Monitor reports that In Uganda and Tanzania, pass rates were at 4 per cent and 8 per cent respectively. “There is a crisis of learning in Kenya, Tanzania and Uganda. Governments are proud of their achievements in expanding school enrolments. But they should now not hide behind these achievements, and focus instead on making sure that children in school are in fact learning,” reads part of the report released last month.

Our Program Director, Miriam Wertlieb, has met with education officials continuously and stated that ‘the current education system is not working, and this is why they are in the process of overhauling it completely to make the system better and improve the education that Ugandan children receive.’

This is great news and for the students of Uganda, we hope its impacts will be seen sooner than later.

Read more about the report here.

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