25-06-2022. TALK #3: The new abridged Curriculum experience, enlighten parents and other stakeholders

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RADIO TALKSHOW #3 – 25TH -06-2022

Our good listener, I want to welcome you today and we are very happy to be here today my name is Nakirya Brenda Doreen; I work with Community Concerns Uganda Initiative (CCUg) moderating this program today.  I want to say hallo to all the listeners tuning today on 90.6 FM and all callers who manage to call in everytime we are here  and to most especially the districts where we work like Iganga& Bugweri, Luuka, Mayuge,Kaliro and Bugiri where this project is currently operating and all of you wherever you are. Community Concern is working in areas of education, health and livelihood and our offices are in Wairaka, working with Mayuge, Jinja, Kamuli, Luuka and Buyende districts. I would like to thank our friends Elevate Partners for Education together with the International Christian University of Japan who have been able to fund and ensure that this program is aired today.  Well, I have not come alone in the studio but I have my friends I came along with who are going to you their names and where they are coming from. I have a lady and a gentleman and on my left let me begin with you madam to introduce yourself to the listeners.

 

First panelist: Madam Moderator thank you so much for giving me this opportunity to come and speak to people through Busoga Fm. My name is Buhirwa Janepher a head teacher in Kaliro, heading Buwangala P/S. I am so happy for all the listeners, the parents, children and listners stay well.

 

Moderator:  You are so welcome Madam Buhirwa Janepher and I want to welcome the gentleman on my right hand to introduce himself by telling us where he works and the district where he comes from.

 

Second panelist: Thank you so much madam moderator my name is Moses Eliot Mugobolo the head teacher of Buyinda P/S in Kaliro district. I am great full for being here today and able to share something about education in Busoga and the entire Uganda. I do appreciate Elevate project for giving us this opportunity to talk about the children’s learning and us teachers on how we are handling our schools. I thank you so much and wishing you to listen very well and later you will say something don’t go away.

 

Moderator: You are welcome and I want to remind you that Elevate partners for Education is working to improve learning in education using the local available materials. Today we are going to talk about Understanding the abridged Curriculum and we are going to talk more about this.

 

Allow me to remind you that two weeks ago we were here with Mr. Balondemu Simon from GIST Iganga who hosted two parents here and one of them was Mr. Mutyaba Robert aoparent from Busesa Mixed P/S in Bugweri district and Mr. Mwangwa Kyaterekera Frank a parent from Ibanda P/S in Iganga and they talked about the roles of parents in supporting children’s learning and how they emotionally feel as they grow up since the reopening of schools. I would like to remind you of a few points they talked about and they said that;

  • It’s very important to bring up children in a religious way since this one helps them to transform their behaviors.
  • They said that parents should be very mindful about your children’s learning by constantly checking their books, and knowing that does that child write because it’s very important.
  • They said that it is always important to cross-check with their teachers and they put right their learning. But they said that these days’ parents are having a challenge of showing love for their children because if it is done well, then they will fulfill their responsibilities leaving that to their children.
  • Most parents have failed to do school visits to check on their performances as it’s done in boarding schools. Because in day schools this is arrear occasion though a parent can go there and get to know how their children how learning and performing.

 

well, I wanted to remind you a little of what we learned last time and I believe that our good listeners you picked up something. Even today I am reminding you that we are learning about Understanding the abridged Curriculum. Remember that our children took close to two years when they were not learning apart from those ones who were in upper classes who went to class for the short time but remember it took them some good time when they were not in schools together with teachers who were not teaching. And this year the government came up with the new curriculum to recover what they had lost during that time. So that’s what we are going to talk about and you will know how this abridged curriculum works and operates. Just as the head teachers I have today told you, I would like Madam Buhirwa Janepher from Buwangala P/S though she’s new in this school from Ihagalo P/S. She is two weeks old in that school but please tell us the parents, children and all the listeners about this abridged curriculum how is it because parents hear about it but they don’t understand it, so what is it?

Buhirwa: Thank you madam moderator, this abridged curriculum is one that the government set in place through the new curriculum development center to try to gap up for the child not to lose after those two years when children were not in school. To give an example a child who was in P.3 and lost all the content, therefore the government came up after making throw research with this new curriculum that it moves two steps ahead and two in front for the child/student not to lose completely. What does it mean like in P.3 a syllabus may not have been covered but this one covers the gap. The old standard curriculum had a lot of things to cover but they singled out the most important issues were the ones that were added to this curriculum. Therefore this curriculum helps to bridge the gap of what the child had lost and moves with the current content in the new class to help in preparation and others.

Moderator: Alright, let me think that you listening in now you understand what this curriculum is. Now that you have taught us this curriculum, and this curriculum started this year and this term, which experience do you have in this curriculum? And are teachers following it?

Buhirwa: Thank you, Madam Brenda, for that question, listeners the new curriculum has got its challenges but, in the beginning, it was challenging because it was new and the training, we got wasn’t enough for us to understand all but as we get familiar with it, teachers are going on understanding it and teachers teaching one another. Only the challenge is with the reference books because those books were not provided but as teachers, we have familiarized ourselves with it, teaching is flowing and the children are now getting used to it.

Moderator: Thank you so much Madam, Now Mr. Mugobolo from Buyinda P/S we would like from you, in your school- how are you handling this curriculum with the teachers? We have heard Miss Buhirwa and how she is doing it. How did the teachers transform from the old curriculum to the new curriculum?

Mugobolo: Thank you Madam Brenda, our listeners you will forgive me and I will use my favourate language- Lulamoji. The moderator of this program, I wanted to tell you that in Buyinda P/S in Kaliro district just like my colleague said that the new abridged curriculum is well handled. How? Like the h/t I did attended a three days training in this curriculum and teachers were trained in one day. It means that people got knowledge instantly however, there were some challenges associated with it but in Buyinda P/S the new curriculum is moving on very well. The learners automatically and as parents, children, we forward to the teacher and we are looking to give them the best. This curriculum just like my colleague said it was summarized by NCDC (National Curriculum Development Centre), where the government of Ug, gave them the responsibility to organize the syllabus for the curriculum. Teachers and all the people we work with are conducting well this new arrangement.

Moderator: it is very good to hear that in Buyinda, you are very well handling the abridged curriculum. But I would like to know what good you see in this abridged curriculum since its beginning last term and time ahead?

Mugobolo: Thank you Madam, the good in the new abridged curriculum, first is on the teacher because the old curriculum was very large and was preparing a child in none issues, but the government so that there are important things in someone’s day to day life. The curriculum works on what is beneficial to the life of an individual. This one reduced the big workload for teachers and for the side of the learner,

Moderator: How is it going to be beneficial?

Mugobolo: It is going beneficial to their lives in a way that we prepare the child from primary and by the time he/s goes to a secondary level like senior three, will know in which area to concentrate in for vocational skills and if he decides to do woodwork, metal work etc. they will have a certificate. Therefore, by the time they go for the secondary level, they are already prepared. They will be with the marks which shall be sent to the ministry for awarding and it is called continuous assessment. Then those marks shall be added by UNEB the examiners like I am because we mark and some children get 04 meaning from p.1 to p.7 this child did not learn anything. Therefore, this curriculum will help them to at least get some marks.

Moderator: do you mean this assessment is there at lower levels like p.1 and p.2?

Mugobolo: Yes this assessment has been there with the thematic curriculum and we do assess them from p.1 – p.3 because p.4 is called transitional class and from that to p.7, we use a different assessment.  The ministry tells us that we should not give them end-of-term exams but as head teachers, we are adamant about that because we need to know how they are performing. Like p.7 for this and some years to come, it may not be there but in the coming years it is going to work and secondary it’s going to work up to s.4.

Moderator: Thank you very much sir for explaining to us all that concerns with the abridged curriculum. And now Madam Buhirwa what are you hearing about from parents, children and teachers concerning this abridged curriculum?

Buhirwa:  Thank you moderator, but as you that when something is new, and as I told you in the beginning children and the teachers were not complaining and things were not working out well for them but during the process, they were baptized in the new curriculum. And the children are still very innocent and they believe in teachers because they are the providers and when we come to parents, many come one by one to inquire about the new curriculum and we take the initiative of explaining to them how it works to cover up the gap for the lost time of the other years. We have seen them appreciating this curriculum.

Moderator: Thank you so much madam and we will go in for our break and when we return we will ask you to give us calls and share with us on how you understand the a bridged curriculum and going with it. The numbers to call on when we return are 0776999906 0757906906 and share with and for those one who will not be able to go through, please use our social medial platforms like Elevate partners for Education on face book and on Twitter @Elevate ED, share with us and tell us what is happening to you over there in schools, children, parents, teachers etc. Please don’t go away.

Break

Well, I want to remind you that the wisdom to improve learning resides in each one of us and I welcome back from that break to my colleagues in the studios and encourage to please call us and we share on 0776999906 or 0757906906 about the abridged curriculum and the differences you have seen and what is happening to those schools out there.

Caller One: My name is Christopher from Bugiri, I appreciate your services.

Moderator: How do you comment about the new abridged curriculum?

Caller one: with us this side everything is moving on very well.

Moderator: Alright, thank you very much.

Hello caller, thank you for calling please tell us your name and where you are calling from?

Caller two: My name is Ismael from Kayunga

Moderator: Yes Ismael, how is this new curriculum that side do you understand it?

Caller Two: The new curriculum is good because it reminds you of the past and I appreciate and recommend teachers to do their work.

Moderator: Okay thank you,

Hello, thank you for calling and tell us your names

Caller Three: I am Eng. Lazaro from Bulopa,

Moderator: Yes

Caller Three: I do appreciate the topics that you ever bring to us because they are teaching lessons to our children and they help us.

Caller Four: Hello, thank you for the service.

Moderator: Hello tell us your name and where you are calling from.

Caller four: I am Frook from Buguwa.

Moderator: Please comment on the new curriculum,

Caller four: I say that this new curriculum is not helpful.

Moderator: How?

Caller four: I think this new curriculum is not helpful because children are at school but they are not learning anything, if we are following the old curriculum then children would learn more like the previous times.

Caller five: My name is Mayanja Azizi from Iganga.

Moderator: Yes Mayanja.

Caller five: Thank you for that program but I want to assure the head teacher Mr. Mugobolo to encourage all teachers to teach this new curriculum because so many have not yet understood it just like us the parents. Thank you for the program.

Caller Six: Hello,

Moderator: Please tell us your name and where you are calling from.

Caller Six: My name is Promoter Sanyu from Nabirye,

Moderator: how is this new curriculum over there?

Caller six: That curriculum is very good and I have called to appreciate you for these good programs.

Moderator: Thank you for appreciating but now Mr. Mugobolo there are questions which have been possed like one who said that children are not learning and this new curriculum is not well taught. Can you respond to that sir?

Mugobolo: Thank you so much Madam Brenda, let me hope my brother from Iganga as well as my neighbor from Kaliro you have got a complaint that children are not learning and children in your school do not understand the curriculum.

I wish you mentioned the name of the school but unfortunately did not in teaching there is what we call benchmarking and as a teacher you can visit your fellow teacher and copy the good in him/her. If you had told me I would connect up with your head teacher and we together find a solution.  Secondly, if the H/T does not have enough experience in the new curriculum, the government of Ug has got a high program to improve learning from down. Because they have put in place tutors in different centers to respond to all challenges concerning education and h/she can train your teachers. And the advice I can give you is to reach out to your head teacher to visit the CCT or the inspector of schools with much experience in supporting your teachers. Let me hope I have responded well to you to improve learning in that unmentioned school.

Moderator: Thank you very much Sir. And what you had just talked about I remember one day the principal was here talking about the same and teachers can be supported in that new abridged curriculum with the CCTs. Alright, let me pick some two calls for now.

Caller seven: Hello Busoga One.

Moderator: Thank you for calling and tell us your name and where your calling from;

Caller seven: I come from Buwenge and I am called Sharifa of S.1.

Moderator: Yes Sharifa, thank you for calling.

Caller seven: What I am asking is that I did not study in first term and yet those marks are added, how will I connect up with my fellow students in S.2 yet I missed in S.1?

Moderator: Thank you for that question our seniors here are going to respond.

Caller eight: My name is Sharif from Bugabo.

Moderator: Yes Sharif how is this new curriculum sir?

Caller eight: This new curriculum would be beneficial but most of the teacher are not minding because they leave children in classes to attend to their gardens. And they still ask money to buy chalk and now they have gone for their industrial action, we don’t know whether our children will be able to seat for their exams like those ones learning now.

Moderator: Thank you so much for your concerns and the head teachers here are going to respond to your concerns. Let us pick this caller.

Hello caller, thank you for calling, please tell us your name and where you’re calling from?

Caller nine: I am calling from Buyende district and I am called Walubu Peter.

Moderator: How is the new curriculum that side?

Caller nine: The new curriculum would be good if its helping our children but the challenge is with teachers who are every time strike.

Moderator: Thank you so much. Hello caller, thank you for calling and tell us your name.

Caller Ten: My name is Muza from Buwaiswa Luuka. The new curriculum would be good but the government would first bring the requirements to schools but children cannot learn without those learning materials and reference books. That is my suggestion.

Moderator: Okay thank you.

Caller Eleven: Weldone madam, my name is Kojjo Steven from Nawantumbi.

Moderator: How is this new curriculum over there?

Caller eleven:  The teaching of vocational education is very good because many are dropping out of school at a low age, with me, I think this one helps them to have a skill that can help them in wherever they go. Secondly, is the government going to employ new teachers with these skills or they will train those very ones to handle the children?

Moderator: Alright, your question is going to be handled and let me pick the last caller hello.

Caller Twelve: I am from Kidera.

Moderator: Share with us what have is you learning from the new curriculum?

Caller twelve: I only want to appreciate your services and we are very grateful for that.

Moderator: Okay, let us respond to those questions and Madam Buhirwa, there is a parent who was talking about the materials, we would like to know how you are handling with the issue of materials.

Buhirwa: Ladies and gentlemen thank you for listening to us but as we talked that this new curriculum is very new and we see that the government selected topics like if the work is for p.5 and the teacher is handling p.6, then he will use the textbooks of p.5 in p.6 and if a teacher drafted his scheme of work it is more important because he has already done some research and books are there at the primary level its is comparing notice.

Mugobolo: To add on Miss. Buhirwa’s issue, my brother Amuza from Luuka you will visit your HT to understand this curriculum. And apart from that, the government sends money to schools and we plan for that money in 4-5 phases like if there are 2M, One million goes to scholastic materials to the learning of the children. Amuza visits your HT for more inquiry and in my school Buyinda P/S I use part of that money on open market to add more books because the government does not spend enough money to buy those materials.

Moderator: That is what they call using wisdom to get what you want. And there is a student who asked I think you remember her question please use less than a minute to respond to her.

Mugobolo: My daughter Sharifa of S.1 from Buwenge, sorry I don’t know which problem you had that made you not attend the first term but I will still blame you that if you never had any problem you would go to school and study. Because as I told you that those marks will be asked by UNEB and this one will affect you but here you are on the mercies of your teacher and head teacher who can either cook marks and this is dangerous to you as a student and to your parents. Go and talk to your HT and two go through your teacher to see your DOS otherwise never do it again however sick you are go and build your marks from S.1-S.4

Moderator: I believe she went back to school and this one will not so much affect her

Mugobolo: I can give an example of A- levels like balancing papers the 90 and 20 marks where you need to balance such that you’re not affected. Then Sharifu from Buvuma said that teachers ask for money and they leave children in classes to their gardens.  Mr. Sharif, this is not good to air it on the radio but the person killing you is the HT of that school because is the first inspector of the school. That means that is no handling well teachers in that school and two reach out to the parents and the local leaders to help you in that issue.

Moderator: Our time is far spent and right away begin from there to send regards to two people as you close

Mugobolo: First of all I want to appreciate Elevate for reaching us to all the children, parents, and teachers who have sponsored us to come here and this radio, two I want to appreciate the district of Kaliro education department led by DEO Mr. Edward Kamaga and DIS Muwerez Paul and other inspectors and I will thank all teachers of Buyinda P/S and children with my In-laws

Moderator: Okay Miss Buhirwa in a minute,

Buhirwa: Time is far spent but I thank our sponsors and my bosses in Kaliro and my children with friends and teachers.

Moderator: I want to thank our Elevate partners for education and ICU in Japan for sponsoring this program and all listners and regards to Community Concerns continue listening to Busoga Fm and God Bless you.