Over 2000 children enroll in wing schools
Over 2,000 out-of-school children have been enrolled in 20 wing schools established in deprived and hard-to-reach communities in the East Gonja District of the Northern Region.
The wing schools were established under a project known as the “Christmas Calendar Project” (CCP) and being implemented by IBIS in Ghana, a Danish organisation that works to create a just world for children, youth and adults.
The project is aimed at creating opportunities for children in those communities to claim their right to quality basic education as spelt out in the Millennium Development Goal (MDG) 2 and other global development targets.
Already IBIS has, through an earlier project known as the Alliance for Change in Education, worked with communities in Gushiegu, Karaga and other partners to establish 56 wing schools through which over 10,800 out-of-school children had the opportunity to be enrolled in.
Wing schools are simple structures, usually a pavilion, from Kindergarten to Primary three.
The children are enrolled in the wing school because they are unable to journey to the next community where there is a school because of distance.
Mr Eric Kavaarpuo, the Coordinator of the CCP, told the GNA in Tamale on Tuesday that a baseline study conducted by IBIS had revealed that over 9,600 children in the East Gonja District were not in school and that this called for drastic efforts to provide hope for those kids.
He said, “GES has provided available materials from their stores to the new schools which include text books, teachers’ lesson notebooks and class registers” and stressed that IBIS had supplemented GES efforts with exercise books, textbooks, language materials, chalkboards and other materials to ensure the smooth operation of these schools.
“In collaboration with the GES, we have also recruited and trained 60 youth who have been deployed to serve as teachers in these schools and they are entitled to a monthly stipend,” he said.
Mr Kavaarpuo said one unique aspect of the project was the use of local language as a means of instruction in the wing schools, adding “The predominant languages identified by the baseline in these communities are Gonja, Likpakpaaln and Dagbanli.”
Mr Abdul Karim Yahaya Iddrisu, Coordinating Director of the East Gonja District, commended IBIS for initiating the wing schools and that the idea was timely since it could solve school dropout problems.
“We appreciate very much the fact that education is a fundamental right and that children need to access this right to guarantee them a secure future, but the reality is that we have been handicapped in addressing this problem”, he said.
He gave the assurance that the assembly was willing to commit resources to ensure the success and sustainability of the project.
IBIS in Ghana is one of the NGOs in the country that are working to help the country to meet the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) on achieving universal primary education by 2015, as well as the Education for All goals.