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Refugee children are not benefiting from home learning

By Gaaniko Samson Jerry 

Refugee’s children are left out of the home school learning in Uganda as schools were all closed due to the Covid-19 pandemic in Uganda. 

However, with the lockdown, schools in Uganda are all closed and the Ministry of Education and Sports has introduced home learning through radios and television.

Patrick Chandiaga Justine is the Executive Director of Community Empowerment for Creative Innovation (CECI), a Uganda refugees led local CBO operating in Koboko district of west Nile Uganda.

Patrick said refugee families were finding it hard and refugees children were facing it more hard looking at the fact that are coming from refugee families that could not afford some of the basic instruments for them to continue with studies which is home schooling.

He said most of the parents are trying to put food on the table leave alone buying radios and televisions so that they can follow the home school learning programs.

“Refugee children at the moment are missing out a lot from the current education system of home schooling which only favours few.”

Patrick said when it comes to refugee children, it is not favouring them due to lack of radios and televisions.

He said most of these programs have done on Televisions and radios where the refugee homes and families are not having saying at the end of the day refugee children are left out when it comes to home schooling during the program.

Justine further said apart from those refugee children are facing huge challenges when it comes to language being used for home schooling.

He said not all refugees for example in Koboko district are able to speak Kakwa saying they have refugees from different ethnic backgrounds adding home schooling was done in one or two languages which is English or sometimes Kakwa.

He said most of the programs in Koboko are done in Kakwa which does not benefit the large population of the refugees who fled from south Sudan. 

Patrick said children were getting harder to continue with the home schooling during the coronavirus period   saying many refugee girls were getting pregnant because children were at home where some of their parents spend most of their time in the farms.

“Most parents are not having enough time to kook after children and to control them,” he said.

He pointed out that those children look at this as an opportunity for them to spend time with their friends whom they are not sure of their security around them.

 “When it comes to addressing home schooling learning the ministry of education should better design programs that favour all children more especially recording in taps that can be taken to all the communities that TV teaching which only benefits those in the urban areas,” he added.

He added that the program could be recorded and distributed through the house holds such that if the child misses in the morning, the child can pick up in the evening at their own time.

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