The learning level in Vihiga is low, according to NGO report

Uwezo Communication Officer Irene Ngochi
Uwezo Communication Officer Irene Ngochi

19 out of 100 school going children in class three cannot do class two work in Vihiga County according to a report released by Uwezo. Uwezo, an NGO which is an initiative of Twaweza East Africa, said the study was done between September and October 2016. The report said that the organization seeks to stimulate local and national debate on the levels of learning outcomes for action and policy changes in East African Countries.

According to the organization communication officer Irene Ngochi, they visited 89 schools and 2942 children in the area to assess their basic literacy and numerical skills using class two syllabuses.

“We visited 1301 households of children between 6-16 years to come out with these findings of learning assessment survey,” said Ngochi.

She said the report indicated low learning levels in the area and was ranked number 35 in the country with a percentage of 19.3.

She added that volunteer researchers visited 69,183 households and assessed 130,653 children as well as going through 4,500 schools countrywide.

Ngochi was addressing participants when she released the report in Mbale town in a local hotel. She said the report is based on data collected in November 2015 that provides rich insights into the status of education in the county.

The report highlights key facts about education in the area that includes low learning levels, learning outcomes are inequitably distributed, teacher attendance is higher than pupil attendance, County government’s support of Early Childhood development education is low as well as teacher classroom ratio.

However, in the same meeting, TSC (Teacher Service Commission) director John Odongo said that the government had taken necessary steps to improve performance and literacy levels in schools.

“The Commission has introduced strict rules to register qualified and trained teachers to block quacks who have worsened performance in schools,” said Odongo.

He said both private and public schools will recruit from the pool of teachers that the commission has provided for better performance.

He cautioned head teachers against recruiting unqualified educators and added that even the Early Childhood Development teachers will be scrutinized to improve performance in schools.