By Josephine K. Tarawaelie.
The Chief Education Officer in the Ministry of Basic and Senior Secondary School, Dr. Mohamed Kamara Nbogba has confirmed that government has approved over one hundred schools in Moyamba District in less than six months.
He made the disclosure during a one day social mobilization meeting with the MBSSS and inhabitants of the district on the successful implementation of the Free Education Programme at the Moyamba District Council Hall.
He said in the previous years, school authorities spent years to get their documents processed in the Ministry of Education for their schools to attain government status, but that is now a thing of the past since the introduction of the Free Education Programme.
He also said that as a district, they admire the President for being a `talk and do’ leader, and for this reason, he said they are working together as a district to ensure that the programme is successfully implemented.
Dr. Kamara said President Julius Maada Bio has said that he does not want to see pupils covering longer distances to attend classes and therefore they in Moyamba district will work towards setting up schools close to these communities with denser population of school going kids.
He mentioned that the Minister, Hon. Alpha Timbo’s desire is for the non-approval of community schools to be a thing of the past. This, he said, is to ensure that every child benefits from the Free Education Package.
He said in order for the Ministry to carry out an organized process of school approval, the Planning and Policy Unit in the Ministry held a nationwide school survey where in every school in the country was captured in a data. The useful data is what the Minister is currently using to approve schools, recruit teachers and supply teaching and learning materials.
He disclosed that his office has examined and completed processing of files sent to the Ministry for approval.
However he said, in order to enable senior pupils to sit to the West Africa Senior Certificate Examination in the respective schools, the Ministry gave premium to Senior Secondary Schools
In his keynote address, the Minister of Basic and Senior Secondary Education, Alpha Timbo said that over the past years the educational sector of the country was been challenged with issues such as examination malpractices and the exchange of sex for grades.
He noted that these factors have led to questioning the integrity of the educational standards of the country, and as result, he emphasized for the need to transform the educational system.
Alpha Timbo is almost wrapping up the nationwide social mobilization tour across the country. It is widely anticipated that this activity will help address some of the factors that hinder teaching and learning processes in communities across the country.