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Sierra Leone News: DFID to provide braille versions of textbooks… As Pres. launches $2.7m school supplies

The Country Director of DFID, Mary Hunt, revealed that the United Kingdom government will provide braille editions of the core textbooks for blind pupils. She made this disclosure during the launch of the core textbooks, teaching and learning materials valued at Le42.7 million by President Julius Maada Bio at the Government Technical Secondary School along Main Motor Road in Freetown, yesterday Wednesday 9 January 2019. Hunt said the UK government is pleased to support the free, quality education program with $2.7 million for textbooks, teaching and learning materials.  Hunt reiterated that girls sometimes lag behind in schools because of safety issues, sexual harassment, rape, pregnancy and health concerns. These issues, according to her, reduces their enrolment and increases their dropout rates from schools. President Bio reassured parents and said the Government will invest in human capital. He said the free, quality education is for every Sierra Leonean child and that it is incumbent on every parent to ensure they send their children to school. The Government has allocated more than 21% of the national budget to the education sector. But, President Bio pleaded with teachers, parents, the pupils and every citizen to assist in monitoring the process for it to be successful. Ibrahim Jalloh of Government Technical Secondary School expressed his appreciation to government for coming with the core textbooks. Jalloh called on his colleagues to make good use of the core textbooks especially now that they would be supplied to them for free. He assured that if the books are timely distributed to them their performance on all external exams would be excellent, he promised. The Minister of Basic and Senior Secondary Education, Alpha Osman Timbo, said the event is a milestone in the country’s history stating that despite all the negative rumors the government’s flagship project is taking a positive implementation pace. Timbo said government would be supplying the core textbooks, teaching and learning materials to all schools across the country stressing that government had spent over Le200 billion on the program. The Minister expressed government gratitude to donor partners especially DFID and World Bank for their support to the sector.

MK/9/1/19

By Mohamed Kabba

Twitter: @chikakabba

Thursday January 10, 2019.

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