From Awareness Times Newspaper in Freetown

Local News
‘Sierra Leone Needs Re-Branding In Education’ … Education International
By Mohamed Kanu
Jun 10, 2010, 17:00

In their poise to promote education in Africa as a whole, and to rebrand Sierra Leone’s system of education in particular, the Education International, an International educational lobby group on Wednesday 9th June 2010 engaged members of the parliamentary oversight committee on education on the need to improve on the country’s ailing educational system.

In his address, EI Africa senior coordinator Mr. Emmanuel Fatoma reminded committee members of how education is but important in shaping the destiny of the country, and that they as parliamentarians have a role to play in that regard.

“This is because the people hold you in high esteem as having the capacity to play active role in the promotion of education in this country,” he expressed,  adding that the line between quantity and quality education must be drawn because access without quality education is of  no use in Africa. He said for a good system to be achieved the conditions of service and welfare of teachers need to be improves.

Mr. Fatoma deplored the negative attitude by the public towards teachers.  “The public should stop seeing teachers as striking dogs because we need a well motivated teaching force to provide quality education to our children,” he said.  He in that respect implored members of the education committee to advocate for and give moral support to teachers for as he put it ‘the classroom is the only place where a child could get quality education.’

EI Africa chief coordinator Madam Assih Napoe informed that they have a membership of about 13 million teachers in the organization working for the promotion of education on the continent.

“We are here in solidarity with the Sierra Leone Teachers Union (SLTU) to work together in improving primary education come 2015,”  she disclosed, while encouraging Members of Parliament to give their fullest support for the promotion of the initiative.

In response, Hon. Tamba Kai Banja of opposition SLPP said  they as parliamentarians are quite aware of the poor conditions of service for teachers in the country. He promised from now on to work with the SLTU and Education International as they believed in corporation.  He said without cooperation they cannot achieve their aims. He also assured of their moral support to the government at all times.

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