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Sierra Leone News: Ensuring education for all

Prior to the introduction of the free education, children born by people with disabilities in Sierra Leone have little or no access to education. As way to achieve inclusive and quality education for all, Maria Primary School was established in 2012 to enrol children to school born by polio victims. Located at Grafton with over 250 pupils from class one to six, Maria Primary school, Lamarana Jalloh, headmistress says that since its establishment  in 2002 has been running as a community school supported by Marian Kargbo, a Sierra Leonean entertainer in China. Jalloh said that issues around approval of the school by the Ministry of Education has been a major challenge. The school did not benefit from the free and quality education package. Jalloh said, “We have done all that is required we are only waiting now on the Ministry to do their own part and because we have not got an approval we have lost most of our pupils.” Despite enormous challenges, she added “Almost all administrative cost have covered by Mariatu Kargbo who think that children born by disabled parents should not be left behind in the quest towards universal primary education. Santigie Kargbo, President, Sierra Leone Disability Issues, highlighted the need to address issues relating to PWDs access to education stated that children with disabilities face multiple forms of discrimination, which leads to their exclusion from society and school. Attitudes toward children with disabilities, he said as well as a lack of resources to accommodate them, compound the challenges they face in accessing education. Kargbo said while lack of access to school is an issue, an equal concern is the inability of the education system to ensure quality education for children with disabilities.


By Sylvia Villa

Thursday October 25, 2018.

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