Government committed to improving literacy to overcome learning poverty: Ntim Fordjour

September 13, 2021 By 0 Comments

Deputy Minister for Education, Rev. John Ntim Fordjour, says government is committed to improving literacy, as part of efforts to help overcome learning poverty in the country.

Literacy is the ability to read and write, and learning poverty is the inability to read and understand a simple text by age 10.

According to him, government was working with development partners to create conducive environments for children to be able to reach their full potential and climb to the highest possible educational level.

Wednesday, 8th September was celebrated by various countries and the United Nations Education Scientific and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO) as World Literacy Day.

The celebration was under the theme; “Literacy for human-centered recovery: Narrowing the digital divide.”

According to the World Bank, poverty is prevalent in many low-income countries with an estimated 53% of pupils at age 10 unable to read for understanding.

The Deputy Education Minister said one of the initiatives the ministry was rolling out to improve literacy is the Transition to English (T2E) Plus program, which is being implemented in partnership with the United States Agency for International Development (USAID).

He explained that the Ministry of Education was working “to implement the Transition to English (T2E) Plus program across 5,425 schools to improve learners’ reading performance among pupils from kindergarten 2 to primary 3.”

“T2E Plus, which is a phonics-based approach to language learning, will sustain the gains yielded by the ongoing Early Grade Reading Program (EGRP), T2E and National Reading Radio Program (NRRP),” he told an Accra – based TV station.

T2E Plus will air supplemental radio reading lessons nationwide, as well as conduct training, coaching and mentoring for teachers and other education personnel. It will also provide teaching and learning materials for pupils.

Mr. Ntim Fordjour chairs a technical committee that will provide guidance for the implementation for the T2E Plus program and make recommendations on how to improve it to the Minister for Education Dr. Yaw Osei Adutwum.

As UNESCO urges education stakeholders worldwide to make digital education tools more available to help improve learning in schools, Mr. Ntim Fordjour assures government is taking the advice seriously.

“That is why we have undertaken a lot of electronic based interventions…  There is tremendous effort at the Ministry of Education to ensure teacher trainees have ICT as a compulsory course that they are taught. Just last week, we also launched ‘One-Teacher One-Laptop’ Initiative which are promoting digital learning,” he explained.