SYLLABUS AND ENGLISH LANGUAGE
With Odongo Odoyo
I was reading a message from one of my friends Dr. Harry Moyi, l had not heard from him for some time now except one or twice when he called. “Hey double O. l hope you must be doing well, so you are secured when you think you are in danger and in danger when you think you are secured. OO wish you good day” I was still pondering over the meaning of this message when another friend called with information that diverted my attention completely from the meaning of Dr. Moyi’s message. My friend doctor l will come back to your message later. The second friend caller was so concerned with the senior four results and asked me a very simple but deep pricing question. Yaba do you know why our children did not do well in English subject. Almost all of them scored poorly in English which is supposed to be the official language. It had not occurred to me to check the passes on each subject which l did because when he called l was having the result copies on my table, true of the 33,255 all got65.1 percent and were ranked 65.1 percent in the performance index. I do not want to go into other issues but the truth is that Christian Religious Education and Mathematic top the position with 89.3 percent and 86.5 percent respectively on the performance index. My friend revealed to me that there was no proper and appropriate English syllabus for both primary and secondary schools and in place some Non-Government Organizations (NGOs) and other players had taken that advantage to introduce their agendas through text books donations which were not relevant to what was required in the English grammar set-up but which were articulating their own agenda. This revelation came as a shockwave or thunderbolt in the education sector if someone had or has not detected it then it is very unfortunate. Surely it could not go far this long before the education sector noticed that there was no syllabus for the queen’s language and no text books that could help, lead and tell the pupil or students what is a noun, adjective or even put a coma or full-stop in proper space ofEnglish grammar. The books provided for by these NGOs serves their interests and outlay most activities without a boundary in which one could learn and master good English language in school. Armed with this and if it is true as it is l would wish Madam Awut Deng to find out the truth if she has not. We know she is very committed to the education of the children and would want to see the best come out of them. I would also wishher to find out where these NGOs get their direction from before publishing books for donation to schools which are eventually paid for dearly by the tax-payers. It is pointless to fill schools libraries with irrelevant books which do not make education any better to the country. There are honest and good donation but still the education sector should fully be involved in every stage because each is meant for the good of our children and the country at large. We must trust that serious thought will be given on this line towards better English grammar.