Plan ghana to aid education through satellite technology

Plan International Ghana through its project, MGCubed Girls’ Education Challenge Programme, has a total of 14,000 girls and 11,000 boys from 72 basic schools in the Greater Accra and Oti regions. This project was funded by UK Aid.

Plan Ghana partners with the Ministry of Education and Ghana Education Service to support the transitioning of boys and girls in primary and junior high schools by delivering high-quality educational content using solar-powered satellite-enabled distance learning technology.

They shared the progress of their project during their dissemination and learning program of the theme “Eight Years of Inclusive and Gender Responsive Teaching and Learning in Ghana using Education Technology” which was held in Accra.

The MGCubed manager, Mr. Jesus Miguel Falcon Perez, said the project gives incentives to pupils and students, in particular girls, so they actively return to physical school or online remedial in literacy and numeracy.

The project also on a regular basis organizes capacity building for teachers through its annual face-to-face and termly online sessions on different platforms.

He further explained the different mechanisms being put in place for a transformative and non-cognitive life skill. These mechanisms include financial literacy, role model sessions, adolescence, and sexual and reproductive health and rights, self-esteem, and confidence through the many club sessions.

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Activities also included in the project are ‘By-grade English and Maths lessons’ and ‘Remedial in Literacy and Numeracy for Primary 3-JHS2 (828 hours per year), ‘after-school clubs’, and provision of learning packs and teaching materials.

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Speaking on support received by Plan International UK, the project provides television and decoders for its learners for easy access to the Ghana Learning Television (GLTV), it offers phone-based learning support, sanitation, and protective equipment which was donated to their schools. They also supported the students with a can during the COVID-19 pandemic. 

Mr. Solomon Tesfamariam, the Country Director, Plan International Ghana, expressed gratitude to the project for exposing students to aspiring role models like Princess Anne, TV presenter Anita Erskine, and most recently in May this year, the UK Prime Minister’s Special Envoy for Girls Education, Helen Grant.

He said the UK is committed to supporting the rights of women and girls in Ghana and the ongoing girl education advocacy, including Ghana’s digital transformation, particularly ‘editech’ which helps provide quality education to all Ghanaian children.

“As such, we are handing over the four Accra-based MGCubed studios to the Ministry of Education’s Centre for National Distance Learning and Open Schooling, and the 216 sets of school-based satellite and solar technology packages to GES.

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“My colleague Grace visited CENDLOS a couple of weeks ago and saw the studios being set up as we speak. We are also handing over all guidelines, manuals, and teaching and learning materials to the Ministry and GES to inform their policies and approaches,” he said.

Mr. Tesfamariam said his office is ever ready to collaborate with the Ministry and civil society organizations to bak policies in improving gender equality and social inclusion in sectors such as education, ICT education, and most importantly marginalize girl child education.

Mr. John Ntim Fordjour, the Deputy Minister of Education, also expressed gratitude to Plan International for its consistent partnership with the government to address the loopholes in our educational system including learning poverty.

According to data gathered, he said only two percent of students under 10 years are able to read proficiently, a situation he deems worrisome and needs stringent educational measures and systems with high levels of numeracy and literacy.

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Ms. Harriet Thompson, the British High Commissioner to Ghana, said the project was one of the three global projects being funded by the UK to promote the inclusion of many girls in acquiring knowledge.

He reiterated that the UK is committed to helping offer Ghanaian children especially, girls quality education.

She extended gratitude to the project team for hard work since it commenced in 2013, and expressed optimism that its implementation would help to reduce gender inequality in basic schools.

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