Norad Framework Project (Quality Learning and Accountability) Launched in Grand Style
On Thursday, 16th July 2015, Save the Children officially launched a Norad Framework project-Quality Learning and Accountability in style. The colorful ceremony took place at Ligowe Primary School in Neno district.
Speaking during the event, Minister of Education, Science and Technology (MoEST), Dr. Emmanuel Fabiano stressed that the responsibility for quality education hinges on coordinated efforts among parents, local leaders, CSOs and the Government, each of whom has a role to play. He called on parents, local leaders and CSOs to support Government efforts to ensure that schools have adequate infrastructure, teachers as well as teaching and learning materials, so that children have an opportunity to learn and become responsible citizens in future.
Minister of Education, Science and Technology (MoEST), Dr. Emmanuel Fabiano talking to the media
“Let us also ensure that we are accountable for the available resources so that we can maximise on the benefits. On our part as Government, we will strive to do the best we can but we need the support of everybody to reduce the challenges faced by our children,” said Fabiano.
“Save the children is our great partner in education and we would like to thank them for taking this initiative to complement Government efforts of promoting quality education. This project will greatly support the Government of Malawi to achieve the goals of the National Education Sector Plan (NESP 2008-2017) which seeks to improve the quality and relevance of education to reduce drop-out and repetition rates among primary school children,” he added.
The project is part of the Norad Framework Agreement for 2015-2018. It will be implemented in collaboration with local NGOs, the MoEST and other education stakeholders in Mwanza and Neno districts, as well as at national level. It is being funded by the Norwegian Government through Save the Children Norway. QLA has two components – education and child rights governance. The education component focuses on improving the quality of the learning environment to achieve better reading and numeracy outcomes in the first four grades of primary school, while the child rights governance component will contribute to the Government’s ability to effectively implement and monitor the United Nations Charter on the Rights of the Child (UNCRC) and the African Charter on the Rights of Women and Children (ACRWC).
The occasion drew together different stakeholders, which included representatives of the MoEST, Ministry of Gender, Children, Disability and Social Welfare (MoGCDSW), Civil Society Organisations (CSOs), traditional and religious leaders, parents, members of parliament, the media and children from different schools in Neno districts.
Students displaying placards, one of thier various presentations during the event
Speaking on behalf of Save the Children, David Onunda, the Director of Education hailed the Government of Malawi for creating conducive environments for CSOs to complement Government development efforts. He stated, “the fact that the Minister of Education and other high profile Government officials are with us today, is clear testimony of our cordial relationship and mutual interest in the development of the education sector in this country. We know that despite the various efforts, there are still challenges, but together, we can reduce such bottle necks and ensure that our children are able to attend school and learn.”
“Children are a very vulnerable segment of our country. They look up to us. We need to support them to develop and mature into responsible citizens,” he added.
On her part, the District Commissioner for Neno, Mrs. M. Monteiro called on the children to exercise responsibility by attending school so that they become useful citizens in future. Traditional leaders also took advantage of the function to express their views over education development as evidenced by Traditional Authority (TA) Mlauli’s sentiments. “On behalf of my fellow chiefs, I would like to pledge that we will support the project fully to ensure that our children learn. The coming of the Honourable Minister of Education to this function today has inspired me to put more energy in supporting education issues in our district,” expressed TA Mlauli.
During the event, students from different schools presented various activities, which included songs, dances, poems, placards, as well as netball and football games.
Written by Charles E. Nzawa, MEAL Manager - NORAD Framework