Mayiga encourages all parents to educate their children

By Daudi Zirimala
The Buganda Premier Charles Peter Mayiga has advised parents to pay much attention on education needs of their children than place much emphasis on material things of their children

Mayiga says when children are groomed and well educated they can manage the wealth of their parents and grow it.

Speaking during the 13th Graduation of Buganda Royal Institute of Business and Technical Education Mengo where over 1000 students were awarded diplomas in certificates in different disciplines, Mayiga said that passing on material things to an uneducated child is very disastrous.

“It’s important to prepare children adequately so that they realize the benefits of working hard because well groomed and educated children can generate their own wealth besides that of their guardians”, says Mayiga.

The principal of Buganda Royal Institute Anthony Wamala reiterated the need of hands on skills to students to enable them be innovative to solve problems affecting our people.

A total of 1482 students have graduated of whom 806 are Female students representing 54.3% and male students are 676 representing 45.7%.

UCE results out, 1825 results withheld

By Deo Wasswa
Uganda National examination Board has today released Uganda certificate examination results for the 2018.

According to the results, Female candidates have performed better than males in English language. In other large entry subjects, male candidates show better performance, with the difference more marked in mathematics and sciences.

Overall improvement in performance has been seen in English language, Islamic religious education and physics. Mathematics and biology have also shown improvement at the distinction level. However Christian religious education, history, geography, agriculture and chemistry showed some decline in performance and chemistry was the worst done subject.

With this performance, UNEB has noted that there is still a challenge in overall pass levels for science subjects where nearly half of the candidates have not archived the minimum pass 8.

A total of 330,721 candidates appeared for the 2018 examination compared to 320119 candidates who appeared for the examination in 2017.

Speaking during the release of the examination at statistics house in Kampala, the UNEB chairperson Mary Okwakol has noted that as result of extra measures that UNEB took to improve management of the UCE examination in the field, the number of cases for the which results are withheld has reduced drastically, from 4525 in the year 2017 examination to 1825 in the year 2018.

According to her, all cases of the 2017 withheld UCE results were investigated and the candidates were given fair hearing by the examinations security committee of the Board. “I am pleased to report that of the 4525 candidates whose results were withheld, 1977 were cleared and had their results released. Regrettably, results of 2548 candidates were cancelled’’. Okwakwol said.

The UNEB has also maintains an examination center at Luzira Prisons for the inmates to assist the Uganda prison services in their efforts at rehabilitation of offenders. The center registered 43 candidates, 40 candidates sat and 7 obtained division 2, 20 were in division 3, 11 in division 4 and 1 failed.

Government to stop all unlicensed schools from operating

BY Moses Kidandi

Results of Over 3000 candidates’ who sat for last year’s primary living examinations have been withheld by the National Examination Board (UNEB) over malpractice.The withheld results comprise mostly schools in the western district of Bundibujo .The Minister of Education First Lady Janet Kataha Museveni warned against examination malpractice and warned the perpetrators of serious consequences.

According to the results,a total number of 67193 candidates sat for the 2018 examination at 13072 registered centers across the country out of which 11% of the pupils who sat for PLE have qualified to join secondary education compared to 9.1% in 2017.

Boys out competed girls in performance with 41064 attaining division compared to 35529.

The First Lady advised parents that they need to follow up and find you if their children registered with UNEB.
Prof Marry Okwakol the Chairperson UNEB ,says there was an increase in candidature of 3.9 % in 2018 compared to 0.8 in 2017 Okwakol says malpractice in schools has been attributed to continued assistance by teachers who keep writing answers to pupils on chits but says the overall performance has improved and more candidates have qualified to join post primary institutions in 2018 the assessment of learner’s with special needs was well done with a Total of 1,128 candidates registering and seating the special needs exams.

The Secretary to UNEB Dan Odongo says a Total of 671,923 registered for PLE from 13,072 centers in her speech,Education minister Janet Museveni has emphasized that no private schools will be allowed to operate without a valid license.
She says Others closed before for non compliance will also be allowed to operate on condition that they fulfill all school operating requirements.
State minister for Education Rosemary Seninde is warning parents against taking their children in unregistered or closed schools.

The minister of Education Janet Museveni has further directed District Education Officers (DEOs) to carry out regular supervisions especially in places with poor performance.

Government launches graduate volunteer scheme

By Edwin Muhumuza

The government of Uganda through the Ministry of Gender Labour and Social Development (MGLSD)with support from the United Nations Development Program have launched the Graduate Volunteer Scheme (GVS).

The project aims at contributing to efforts of addressing persistent employment challenges faced by Ugandan young graduates by leveraging volunteerism as an essential mechanism for skills development.
It aims to create employment avenues for young graduates while building capacity of national institutions, private sector and other partners to mainstream youth employment into their work places. This while ensuring young graduates have a full-on job package that includes coaching, mentor ship, linkages to role models to guide them along their career path.
‘This is our contribution to the national strategy to increase availability and quality of employment and enhance human capital in this country. Said Rosa Malango ,the UN Resident Representative.

Volunteers are matched depending on the available placement opportunities. The process of matching and placing volunteers is led by the selection committee and both volunteers and host institutions have opportunity to participate in the recruitment process. Volunteers also go through a 3 days residential orientation training to induct them on their volunteer placements.

‘Through this scheme our aspirations is that total of 500 young graduates will be placed in various institutions for 12 months period at a time. During that time they will acquire skills related to their area of study.’ Malango added.
So far 100 graduates have been recruited, trained and placed,50% male and female,18% masters ,78% bachelors and 4% diploma/advanced certificate; and 5 graduates with disabilities.
On his part Permanent secretary Ministry of Gender Pius Birimana noted that ‘’This scheme is going to impart hands-on skill to graduates and should be noted that the future prosperity of this country depends ultimately on the number of persons in employment and also how productive they are at work’

According to the 2017 Uganda National Household Survey,78% of the population is below 30 years. Related to that every year about 600,000- 700,000 Ugandans enter the labor market,95% of whom are youth. Youth unemployment persists since many of them lack work experience, skills needed by the labor market plus limited connection to enterprise role models and innovative solutions.

Janet Museveni calls upon religious leaders to join struggle against early marriages

By Deo Wasswa

The first lady also the minister for education and sports, Janet Kataha Museveni has challenged religious and cultural leaders to break the cycle of teenage pregnancy and early marriage in communities.

Speaking during the commemoration of international day for girl child, Janet noted that if it means to arrest family members that have continue to marrying off children, should start now.

“Africa cannot continue in this direction where girls are being married off below 18 years.’’ Janet said. She noted that marrying off children at early age will contribute the creation of families that have no future.

She said cultural and religious leaders must be at the forefront in fighting early marriages and each priest or bishop should consider condemning early marriages whenever they are preaching word of God to believers in their respective churches or mosques.

Speaking at the same event, the UN resident coordinator Rosa Amalong has noted that the United Nations will continue to support the fight against girls up to the level where all communities in Uganda are declared early marriage free zones. She however expressed the concern over the high prevalence rates of HIV/aids among adolescents due to early marriages.

At the same commemoration, a section of girls called up on the government to track those schools that are not implementing the school re-entry policy for pregnant girls and young mothers as a way of addressing gender gaps in the education sector. The girls led by Nalumansi Faridah a 20 year old and a mother of two noted that many girls , who drop out of school due to pregnancy, are victimized by schools, fellow pupils and communities adding that the implementation of a re-entry policy would go a long way in improving retention levels for girls in schools.

Until recent years, the policy in government was that pregnant girls should be expelled from schools. However, this revised in 2009 with a directive allowing students to go back to school especially those in candidate classes to sit their final examinations.

Despite the policy being put in place, girls are still subjected to expulsion and suspension as a disciplinary measure to deter others from getting pregnant.

Since 2012, the United Nations marks 11 October as the ‘International Day of the Girl Child’. The day promotes girls’ human rights, highlights gender inequalities that remain between girls and boys and addresses the various forms of discrimination and abuse suffered by girls around the world.

Education ministry funded to improve refugees’ education

By Daudi Zirimala

The ministry of Education and sports,Education cannot wait and UN education partners have launched the first set of activities under Uganda’s new education response plan for refugees and host communities targeting 100,00 refugees and Ugandan children.

Education cannot wait is a global fund dedicated to providing education in emergencies with 11million dollars aimed at implementing this cause.

According Achillies Nsheki the country director FINALI ,the funds will be managed by the NGO Education consortium and UNHCR in close coordination with ministry of education and Sports and activities will begin in January and will cover nine of 12 refugee hosting districts in Uganda.

He says the initial funding will focus on providing primary education and accelerated education programmes which help children who have missed years of schooling to catch up by teaching a specially adapted primary curriculum in just three years.

“These new funds will support quality education for more than 100,000 children both refugees and local host communities of whom 50% are girls” says Nsheki.

According to Aggrey Kibinge the under secretary ministry of Education ,Under these funds activities will include constructing at least 100 new classrooms, training nearly 1000 teachers,building more than 489 gender sensitive sanitation facilities in schools and providing thousands of new texts books.

The Education Response plan is the first of its kind world wide and was developed to help respond to huge needs in whats in Africa’s biggest refugee education crisis.

Uganda hosts more than 1.1 million refugees and at least 57% of refugee children and 34% of children from local host communities are out of school.

Kibuku leaders ask that electricity be extended to schools and homes

By Deo Wasswa

Local leaders in Kibuku District want the government to extend electricity to schools and homesteads to help in improving the learning of pupils and to reduce on eye health relate problems that come as a result of revising books using candles (Tadoba) especially by pupils in candidate classes.

Timothy Mamberu, the chairperson of Kobolwo village located in Kibuku town council in Kibuku district says lack of electricity  in the areas is among obstacles to pupil’s performance.

Mr. Mamberu was speaking to our reporter amidst  of ongoing exercise of assessing the learning of children in Kubuku district spearheaded by Uwezo Twaweza East Africa.

Other obstacle cited including lack of scholastic materials, lack of school feeding programs, parents attitude to send their children to school, poverty in communities to raise school fees among other

Education ministry highlights measures to curb school drop outs

The ministry of education has put in place a number of measures in order to curb school drop outs.

The minister of education also first lady Janet Museveni said that as one of the measures, it   has started community dialogues to engage parents on elimination of violence against children and encourage them
to support the education of their children.

While responding to concerns of MPs on what measures her ministry was taking to reduce children drop out from schools, she noted that a national strategic plan for local governments   to curb school dropout
has been put in place and the ministry will continue challenging parents on child labor.

The first lady also said   that several   circulars banning corporal punishments have been issued to schools and local Governments on top of the guide lines that were issued as alternatives to corporal

Other measures according to the minister include school feeding and nutrition program, reporting tracking guidelines for violence against children at schools of which minor offenses will be reported to the
head teachers and disciplinary committees as capital offenses must be reported to police.

Minister Janet Museveni also say that her ministry was working with the Gender ministry to disseminate guidelines on responsible parenting.

The ministry of education has also asked teachers to follow up learners who absent themselves from schools by doing home visits.

Education innovation introduces uniform material for all schools

By Deo Wasswa

In a move to bridge the gap between rural and urban education, Ugandan innovators have introduced an education digital platform that can avail uniform education material to all students across the country at free cost.

According to Alfred Opio the Executive Director, Kaino Africa and co-founder of the Kaino tablets, these gadgets have all textbooks required by  Ugandan curriculum and can as well generate self-assessments to students.

He said their mission is to avail these tablets to all schools in East Africa at free cost in a period of 12 month and the whole of Africa in three month.

He added that these gadgets are user friendly, cost effective and can be used in all regions regardless of their geographical difficulties

Karamoja needs more school: MP Lokeris

By Moses Kidandi
Members of parliament  from Karamoja sub region have attributed he poor performance of pupils to lack of basic school necessities in their area. The MPs have explained that the the entire population in Karamoja has adopted a positive attitude towards education.
However Member of Parliament Dodoth East Kabong ,Samson Lokeris  says much as they have embraced the need to go to school,they don’t have schools and teachers. Lokeris is appealing to the ministry of Education to prioritize the setting up of more schools in the region so as to have more children enrolled.