The United Nations Children Funds (UNICEF) has said that a total of 285,000 vulnerable children affected by insurgency have benefited from learning at the right level of education intervention in the two states most affected by the crisis in the North East region of Nigeria.
Education Specialist, UNICEF Maiduguri Field Office, Mustapha Shehu disclosed this in preparation for the commemoration of this International Day of Education with the “Learning for lasting peace” in Maiduguri on Tuesday.
He noted that the Partnership for Learning for All in Nigeria, an Education Emergency Program (PLANE-EIE), was a four-year £ 16 million grant initiative set up in December 2021, expected to conclude in December 2025.
He also said that the initiative underscored a comprehensive approach to addressing the educational challenge posed by conflict, specifically emphasising inclusivity and quality learning for vulnerable children.
He also said that the project focuses on supporting the recovery of the Education systems in Maiduguri, Jere, Konduga, Damaturu, Nguru, and Potiskum in Borno and Yobe states, respectively.
“We are able to reach 275,000 vulnerable children between ages 6-17 years affected by the conflicts and have been empowered to overcome academic and social challenges. I can tell you within the first six months of this intervention they can read and write.
“Over 32,000 girls developed crucial skills including psychological and interpersonal skills. Aside 1,035 government officials, at least, 7,200 educators and facilitators across 148 schools equally benefited from our project teaching at the right level (TaRL),”
He stressed that the project was successfully advancing towards its goals, focusing on improving teaching and learning approaches for conflict-affected foundational learning skills and the creation of a secure learning environment through inclusiveness.
Also speaking, Ian Attfield, Senior Education Advisor for the Partnership for Learning for All in Nigeria programme, British High Commission who was in the region to assess the PLANE-EiE, said that he was impressed with the performance of the pupils.
According to him, the British government was concerned about the high level of dropout of children in Nigerian schools, while calling on the Federal Government to do more by developing its teeming youth populace.
The initiative is funded by the Partnership for Learning for All in Nigeria project by the Foreign, Commonwealth, and Development Office, in collaboration with Education Cannot Wait.