By Albert Futukpor, GNA
Salaga (N/R), March 31, GNA - Over 3,600 out-of-school children, who live in 32 communities where schools do not exist in the East Gonja District, have gained access to education following their enrolment into the Christmas Calendar Wing Schools Project (CCP).
Wing Schools are lower primary schools of kindergarten to primary three – opened in communities where schools do not exist – where children enrol in school at the right age of four, and upon completing primary three, they transit to primary four in a full-fledged public primary school.
Oxfam IBIS, a non-governmental organisation, implemented the CCP in the East Gonja District from 2013 to March, 2017, with support from the Christmas Calendar fund, a DANIDA grant, to reduce the numbers of out-of-school children in the District.
Mr Tijani Ahmed Hamza, Oxfam IBIS Country Director, who spoke during the closing of the CCP at Salaga, said out of the 20 wing schools established under the CCP, 16 were in various stages of being integrated into the public school system.
Mr Hamza said an assessment of the numeracy and literacy skills of the 3,642 beneficiary children revealed proficiency levels of 69.4 per cent in literacy and 59 per cent in numeracy as against public schools, which had a proficiency of 24.3 per cent in literacy and 27.3 per cent in numeracy.
He appealed to Ghana Education Service to absorb the 60 teachers (41 of whom have completed the Untrained Teachers’ Diploma in Basic Education) that served under the CCP onto the government’s pay roll to ensure the sustainability of the wing schools and schooling for the over 3,600 beneficiary children.
Alhaji Issah Abass, Head of the Inspectorate Unit of the Northern Regional Directorate of Education, who represented the Regional Director of Education, expressed government’s appreciation to development partners for their roles to improve access to education in the Region.
Mr Abu Baba, East Gonja District Director of Education, assured that the District Education Directorate would give priority attention to wing school teachers when there was an opportunity to recruit teachers at the district.
Ms Hilda Kada, one of the wing school teachers, who spoke on behalf of her colleagues, appealed to government to absorb them into the Ghana Education Service as teachers to continue teaching the children.GNA