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Gov't moves to improve reading skills in primary schools

Saturday, April 12, 2014    

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GOVERNMENT has allocated $205 million in the 2014/15 budget for programmes to improve the reading skills of primary school students.

The funds have been provided under a joint project between the Ministry of Education and the United States Agency for International Development (USAID), aimed at increasing grades one to three reading fluency skills in 450 targeted primary schools in the Literacy 1-2-3 project.

For this fiscal year, it is anticipated that under the project, the training of 90 reading coaches working with the 450 project schools will continue. In addition, teachers are to be assisted in the Literacy 1-2-3 curriculum in lesson planning, model lessons, and identifying students for remedial assistance.

It is also expected that Post Grade One Individual Learning Profile Training for Grade One teachers in the Quality Education Circles (QECs) will be conducted. Also, the Early Reading Assessment Instrument (ERAI) will be administered to grade two students in selected schools, while 30 parent places are to be established in Regions 2, 3 and 5 of the Ministry of Education.

Up to February 2014, 90 reading coaches have been trained to administer the ERAI to grade two students in selected project schools islandwide.The ministry said the administration of the ERAI to grade two students was completed in approximately 150 project schools islandwide.

Other achievements under the project include the completion of sensitisation sessions with school principals regarding the work of reading coaches/project activities; the commencement of training workshops in lesson planning; as well as the start of the procurement process for the supply of computers, multimedia projectors and cameras for use by reading coaches in regional offices.

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