On importance of EGRA

Tuesday, March 26, 2019

A renowned Indian philosopher- Mahatma Gandhi has once said that “Live as if you were to die tomorrow. Learn as if you were to live forever.” This simply reminds us about the power of education and the importance of Early Grade Reading Assessment (EGRA), an initiative designed to propel students’ holistic development especially at the early stage in life.

EGRA as it also known is integral component in the overall development of students’ progress towards reading.

Developed and championed by education experts in 2006, the initiative has now been piloted and implemented in more than 40 countries.

Claudiana Cole, the Minister for Basic and Secondary Education (MoBSE) recently briefed lawmakers at the National Assembly that her ministry is currently distributing new Early Grade Reading Assessment (EGRA) and other materials to schools that were revised and adjusted in the summer of 2018.

This is welcomed moves in her Ministry’s quest to ensure effective teaching and learning in our schools.

Nearly 3 decades after the first of a series of global commitments to high-quality education for all, many countries in Africa strive to keep their promises to ensure that all children go to school. This resulted in rapid expansion of enrollments in recent years with increased in per-pupil funding, preparation and hiring of teachers, or development and distribution of teaching and learning materials.

Few dispute the importance of learning to read within the first years of primary education, especially because learning that occurs early compounds over time.

However, surveys affirmed that students struggling to learn to read at the end of grade 1 must achieve twice the fluency gains in grade 2 to catch up with their peers.

Therefore, it is high time The Gambia also join other countries that have already implemented and are narrating their success stories.

In order to make headway in our unify march towards quality education for all, there is need for all stakeholders in the education sector to continue monitoring and collecting feedbacks from schools on curriculum materials. This feedbacks could be used to revise and adjust the materials if need be.

“Children are made readers on the laps of their parents.”

Emillie Buchwald