Project information

The Learn to Read Campaign, Uganda

This project will engage teachers, pupils and parents to support over 35 775 children in 65 schools in Uganda to learn to read. Increasing literacy levels of children by the time they reach Year 3 will result in a decrease in total dropout rates.

July 2014 - November 2018

Charity information: Build Africa

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  • Need

    Need

    Literacy underpins all other learning and is the foundation of schooling. However children in Uganda are failing to learn this critical skill with less than 40% of those in Year 3 (on average seven and eight years old) being able to read and comprehend a basic sentence. Learning is happening too slowly or not at all. Many pupils repeat these early years in order to improve their grades but the situation doesn’t improve with 80% of children dropping out before the final year of primary.

    Solution

    Build Africa will work with teachers, parents and pupils to ensure the youngest children acquire the skills they need to do well in school, and in life. Teachers will be inspired to deliver child-friendly and good quality teaching, engaging children in class. In line with the Ugandan Government’s approach to early primary literacy, we are introducing a phonetic based system of reading which will help children accelerate their learning and get the most out of school.

  • Aims

    Aim 1

    To improve the teaching of literacy among children in the first three years of school.

    Activities

    » We will train teachers in widely proven phonetic based reading approaches as well as new ways to engage younger children in class.

    We will show the percentage of girls and boys (in the third year of primary school) who are now able to pass a literacy and numeracy test.


    Aim 2

    To improve engagement of pupils in their lessons.

    Activities

    » We will provide learning resources such as counting games, jigsaws and toy clocks to improve literacy and make lessons interactive and engaging.

    We will show the % of young children who report that their teachers are actively engaging them in classroom activities


    Aim 3

    To improve access to reading materials for children in the first three years of school.

    Activities

    » We will establish mini libraries which will be stocked with age-appropriate books to develop the reading abilities of younger learners.

    We will report on the number of mini libraries and access to books that have been given to schools within the project


    Aim 4

    To engage parents so they can support their child's learning at home.

    Activities

    » We will establish parents clubs, hold open days and provide parent packs so they can engage more in their children’s learning.

    We will show the % of young children who state that they have used learning resources (homemade or manufactured) at home in the past week


  • Impact

    Impact

    Young boys and girls will receive academic and social support for their learning, in and out of school, to acquire the skills to fulfil their educational potential. More children will feel supported, with fewer repeating years or dropping out and more passing P3 literacy and numeracy tests. Good foundational skills will positively impact their educational performance, improving opportunities for ongoing education and future employment, giving them the key to a poverty-free life.

    Risk

    Ensuring teacher buy-in may be a challenge, given poor motivation; we are addressing this by providing the skills and platforms for recognition and celebration. Low levels of parental literacy is a concern; we are working with Mango Tree to develop appropriate tools for them to support children.

    Reporting

    Donors will receive bi-annual project reports, case studies and photos. Progress will be measured through a variety of methods including quarterly review meetings with staff and Education Monitoring Groups, monthly and quarterly programme and financial reports and a full final external evaluation.

  • Budget

    Budget - Project Cost: £260,000

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      Amount Heading Description
      £78,000 Teacher training and materials Develop and test an early years toolkit. Train 235 teachers on a phonetic approach.
      £91,000 Libraries & learning resources Establish 65 mini libraries with literacy & numeracy books & resources in each early year classroom.
      £65,000 Parents packs, open days and a Develop, test & train facilitators to help 29,525 parents to support learning at home.
      £26,000 Monitoring and evaluating, tec Baseline survey, data collection and analysis, reviews and final evaluation to measure impact.

    Current Funding / Pledges

    Source Amount
    Churches £1,030 Guaranteed
    Community £560 Guaranteed
    Corporates £25,816 Guaranteed
    Major donors £44,276 Guaranteed
    Schools £3,567 Guaranteed
    Trusts and foundations £10,650 Guaranteed
  • Background

    Location

    This project is in 25 schools in North West Uganda, in the rural districts of Masindi, Kiryandongo and Buliisa and 40 schools in East of Uganda, in the rural districts of Kumi and Ngora. Poverty indicators in these areas are high with around 60% of the population living below the poverty line. Adult illiteracy is high, negatively impacting children’s early cognitive development. Only 20% of children in these areas go on to the final year of primary.

    Beneficiaries

    Over the next three years we will support 35,775 children in Uganda. In addition, 29,525 parents and 235 teachers will be trained and resourced to support children, and the impact of this capacity building will continue beyond the project lifespan. The skills they have learnt will remain with them and benefit children for years to come.

  • Why Us?

    Why Us?

    We have supported more than 150,000 children through our education projects, and have seen more children going to, doing well in, and finishing primary school. We were shortlisted by the Charity Times Awards for ‘International Charity of the Year 2015’ for our focused approach towards education and livelihoods, and because our priorities reflect the aspirations of the people we work with. We work closely alongside the people we are supporting to deliver the best solutions to poverty.

    Read more about the Charity running this project.

    People

    Specioza Kiwanuka

    Country Director, Build Africa Uganda: Specioza joined in 2011 and has more than 20 years' experience in international development

    Fred Semyalo

    Head of Programmes, Build Africa Uganda: 15 years’ NGO and local government work experience at field and country level including at Save the Children

£4000

Can support our Learn to Read campaign in one school for a year

Without any resources to aid us explaining things can take a lot of time. If we received more training and teaching resources it would make our work much easier. Very few pupils can identify letters of the alphabet. You find that you have only taught four sounds of the alphabet after many weeks.

Margaret, P1 Teacher, Nyantonzi Primary School