KAMPALA — The United States Mission in Uganda has launched a study groups program to provide continuity of learning for Ugandan early grade learners who are not able to attend school due to school closures to minimize the spread of COVID-19.
With a goal to tackle the challenges of school closures and support continuity of learning, the study groups program is providing early grade reading materials and instructional support to 17,500 learners in Primary 1 through Primary 4 at home and in community-based study groups.
The study groups will help Ugandan children to access learning while schools remain closed and help prepare them for a return to school planned for June.
The study groups program supports Uganda Ministry of Education and Sports’ COVID-19 Preparedness and Response Plan and is part of the U.S. Agency for International Development’s (USAID) Integrated Child and Youth Development (ICYD) project, awarded in August 2020. The $148 million ICYD project will work with the Government of Uganda to improve the quality of education service delivery in 50 districts and reach more than 4 million children over five years with early grade reading support.
The activity will also train 42,000 teachers, provide 5.5 million copies of teaching and learning materials, and strengthen district government capacity to effectively supervise schools.
“When children acquire early grade reading skills in primary school, it improves their chances for success later in life,” U.S. Ambassador to Uganda Natalie E. Brown said while launching the study groups program at Lake Victoria Primary School in Entebbe, Uganda. Since 2013, she added, more than 3.2 million Ugandan school children have benefited from early grade reading support provided by USAID in partnership with Uganda’s Ministry of Education and Sports.
The USAID/ICYD project will build on these successes to increase access to quality basic education for children and strengthen young people’s ability to address their health and safety needs, making it more likely for them to reach their full potential.
USAID’s development approach is to work hand-in-hand with Ugandan partners be it the private sector, faith-based organizations, or community groups to address the needs of ordinary Ugandans.
The United States has a strong, decades-old partnership
with Uganda and its people. Annually, the United States government invests approximately $1 billion in Uganda to promote economic growth and employability, uphold democratic values, and improve health and education.