AYV News February 8, 2023
The Minister of Basic and Senior Secondary Education, Dr Moinina David Sengeh, has told students in the University of Makeni that Sierra Leone cannot afford not to spend its resources on education, regarding education as the country’s best bet to move to a development trajectory.
He made this disclosure during the University of Makeni 75th Public Lecture and Academic Forum at the University of Makeni Auditorium Bombali district.
“The literacy rate for adult rural women in Sierra Leone is less than 10%, total literacy rate for every Sierra Leonean is 52%. It is not possible in any circumstance to move a country to a development trajectory with those numbers. If you understand the impact of this, your best bet is to spend your money on education, education and education. That explains the principles behind the Free Quality School Education initiative; it is not a political game,” the minister said.
He said the lucky part for Sierra Leone is that the majority of the country’s population is young with 0-35 years making up for about 70% of the country’s population.
The topic of the Public Lecture is; “Free Quality Education as a Vehicle for National Transformation and Development”.
The public lecture provided a forum for sharing knowledge, ideas, and information on the FQSE achievement over the years, and also increased public awareness and understanding of the role of education in the development agenda of Sierra Leone.
It also provides a platform that encourages critical thinking and dialogue, and a space for people to ask questions and engage with the Minister on issues surrounding Education in Sierra Leone, as well as provides learning opportunities for students and expose them to new ideas and perspectives and help to stimulate their curiosity and intellectual growth.
Attendees were given the opportunity to ask questions, engage with the minister, and participate in discussions related to the education and development in Sierra Leone. Attendees were also inspired and motivated to support education at community, district, and national levels. The minister also challenged the students to change Sierra Leone.
The public lecture brought together over 3,000 students and it is recorded as the highest number of attendances since the construction of the UNIMAK Auditorium. Students came from both the University of Makeni and Ernest Bai Koroma University of Science and Technology.
In 2018, the government established the free quality school education program. Free quality school education is committed to the advancement of quality education in Sierra Leone, with an objective to increase nationwide access to quality pre-primary, primary, and secondary school, as well as school-level specialized and vocational training.
The FQSE program guarantees that all costs for formal and non-formal school instruction are covered and permits parents/Guardians to take duty for auxiliary costs concurring to the capacity to pay.
MBSSE in its effort to improve education, it is essential to stress the importance of education in improving the lives of individuals and communities, as well as the benefits it can bring to the country.
MBSSE under the leadership of Minister Dr. David Sengeh has brought in so many initiatives to improve the educational system at the Basic and senior secondary levels, these includes, teacher training, to increase access to education for disadvantaged groups, and to invest in infrastructure and resources.
With all these improvements the educational system has made so far, many Sierra Leoneans are not preview to most of this information, the minister in his effort to continue his good work and bring the public closer to the ministry in the New Year the ministry in partnership with the University of Makeni (UNIMAK) organised the public lecture.
The public lectures could explore ways in which the university community members can get involved in supporting their local schools and education initiatives. This engagement serves as a platform for learning and engagement for the university students, staff, and the public and shapes the direction of the national development agenda.