Uganda Falls Short On ‘Education for All' Goals- Uwezo Report

2315 Views

In short
But the latest report by Uwezo, covering assessments conducted over the last two years shows that little progress was been made in achieving the goals that were set 15 years ago. The findings were released today at Nakasero Primary School in Kampala.

Uganda achieved little progress in the attainment of the 'Education for All' goals set to meet the learning needs of all children, youth and adults by 2015.

The goals include expanding and improving early childhood care and education, ensuring that all children particularly girls, children in difficult circumstances and those belonging to ethnic minorities, have access to and are able to complete the primary education cycle by 2015.

The other is ensuring that the learning needs of all young people and adults are met through equitable access to appropriate learning and life-skills programmes, achieving a 50 percent improvement in levels of adult literacy and eliminating gender disparities in primary and secondary education by 2005.

But the latest report by Uwezo, covering assessments conducted over the last two years shows that little progress was been made in achieving the goals that were set 15 years ago. The findings were released today at Nakasero Primary School in Kampala.

Uwezo-Uganda country Director Dr Mary Goretti Nakabugo says that while government has a very good policy on early childhood education, the implementation is entirely in the hands of the private sector. Nakabugo adds that this has made Early Childhood Programs costly, unmanageable and inaccessible among low income earners.

The research report indicates that children who started from early childhood development centres were able to read a primary two level work by the time they reach primary three compared to those who started straight from primary one. The report recommends that government reviews the implementation of the policy and take on full regulation and provision of early childhood learning.
 
//Cue in: "Unlike other uwezo…
Cue out: …education in Uganda."//
 
Dr Nakabugo adds that while positive results were achieved in access to primary education to many children, the quality remains a cause of concern. The report puts enrolment at about 96 percent.

However, on the learning outcomes, only 13 percent of pupils in primary three are able to read and solve numerical problems of primary two. In primary seven, 74 percent were able to do the same. Nakabugo says this poses a big threat to the future of the children in the country.
 
//Cue in: "The children are…
Cue out: …have the basics."//

UNATU General Secretary James Tweheyo says the results prove that Uganda's education system faces a bleak future. He says the money invested in the sector is not being reflected in the learning outcomes and that practical steps must be taken to improve the learning outcomes.
 
//Cue in: "Education is Uganda…
Cue out: …outcomes we see."//
 
Brother Charles Ssengendo, the Head Teacher of Nakasero Primary School blames the poor learning outcomes to the large teacher to pupil ratio and limited funding to schemes directed towards delivering quality teaching. He observes a need to go back to the drawing board to rectify the situation.
 
//Cue in: "When you go to…
Cue out: …gradually will do."//
 
Hajji Mutazindwa Hzyfa, the Director Education Standards at the Ministry of Education says the challenges facing the sector are real. He says the high enrollment numbers in primary schools have not been matched by increased funding to the sector.

Mutazindwa has challenged the Education Sector Working Group to study the findings and recommendations of the report and incorporate them in the ministry policies for future discussion and implementation.
 
//Cue in: "It's important to…
Cue out: …for necessary actions."//                        
       
Over the years, the Uwezo reports have formed basis for discussions during the annual education sector performance reviews. The reports have also led to review of some of the policies like increasing UPE grants and review on early childhood policy. The 2015 report will be released later this year.