Stakeholders in the Education Sector have reiterated the significant importance of Read Campaign being promoted by Federal Ministry of Education as a strategic step towards addressing the challenges of poor reading culture among students and indeed the general public.
This was a consensus position of various speakers at a workshop marking the 2015 Awareness Campaign on Reading jointly organized by Federal Ministry of Education, National Action Committee on Read Campaign (NACORC) and MDGs Office held on Tuesday, November 24, 2015 in Abuja.
Declaring the workshop open, a Deputy Director in the Ministry, Mrs Christiana Okpede acknowledged education as the vital instrument for national development, but expressed dismay over the current low level of literacy/ poor reading and comprehension competences of learners. “Even more worrisome is the realization that some teachers in the schools do not read comprehensively beyond their respective disciplines, even some graduates from tertiary institutions are deficient in the required reading, speaking and writing skills which either render them unemployable or inhibit their competences in production and service delivery” he said.
Mrs Okpede stressed that the issue of poor performances among students is an unpalatable fact that must be told. This is even as she expressed optimism that sustained awareness campaign on reading would make a positive difference and urged that the collaboration among the stakeholders on the subject matter should be scaled up.
Representative of the Office of the Senior Special Adviser to the President of MDGs, Dr Mrs Ify Ukaegbu said that the collaboration yielded positive results over the years, but urged teachers in particular to take the campaign seriously . “No teacher can teach what he or she does not know” she stressed.
Dr. Ukaegbu said that some of the eight goals of the MDGs were achieved to a great extent and expressed hope that whatever could not be achieved before the December 2015 deadline would be achieved in the new Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) which begins as from January 1st ,2015.
According to her, the SDG has 17 goals and 169 targets with education cutting across all the eight goals.
A representative of FCT Universal Basic Education Board Mohammed Umaru in his remark acknowledged the positive impact of the Read Campaign programme in facilitating education delivery in the territory and assured of continued partnership with relevant departments to achieve quality education.
Deputy Director of Informatics, Mrs Cecilia Daniel admonished the youth who are the target of this year’s campaign to strive to get it right from foundation, saying that anything built on a wrong foundation would not stand.
She urged the participating schools to take the message to the other students back in the school in order to institutionalize reading culture.
Students from about ten schools – Primary and Juniour Secondary schools were invited to the workshop
A member of the National Action Committee on Read Campaign and an Assistant Director in the Ministry of Education, Mrs Claris Ujam took the participants through an Anthem designed for the campaign the Trust of which is that Readers are Leaders and the fact that education brings about resourcefulness, empowerment, advancement and development.
Agidike Abdul Onu