By Niyi Olutunde, Akure
The Universal Basic Education Commission, UBEC, and Ondo State Universal Education Board, SUBEB, is training 600 public primary school teachers in Ondo State in the use of Jolly Phonics programme for teaching pupils how to read and write with confidence.
The training program which is being organised in conjunction with Universal Learning Solution (ULS) is to deliver intensive training to teachers in public primary schools and dedicated government officials in Ondo State.
The training, according to ULS will equip teachers with the expertise and tools required to enable them to improve reading and writing skills in English of primary 1 and 2 pupils in government primary schools throughout the 18 Local Government Areas of the state.
According to Mr Patrick Uzu, Country Director for Universal Learning Solutions, Jolly Phonics programme was introduced in the state to reverse the situation where many pupils leave primary schools not able to read and write with confidence.
He described Jolly Phonics as a fun and interactive teaching tool that uses the Synthetic Phonics literacy teaching methodology, saying that Synthetic Phonics is recommended by governments around the world because of the way it quickly provides children with skills needed to read and write.
Speaking in the same vein, the Chief Executive Officer of Universal Learning Solutions, Mr Gary Foxcroft said, “UBEC have really recognised the tremendous impact that Jolly Phonics has been having on literacy levels in Nigeria’s government schools and have taken it on as one of their flagship programmes. This has helped us to initiate new projects across the country. Jolly Phonics will be in all 36 states, and FCT, by the end of this year. This is truly amazing and will help to improve the reading and writing abilities of over 6 million children over the next two years”.
Mr Foxcroft, however praised the Universal Basic Education Commission (UBEC) for its continued support for the adoption of Jolly Phonics in government schools across Nigeria.
One of the participants, Mrs Ajibola Toyin from Idanre Local Government Area of the state commended the organizers of the program, saying that the program is educative and that she has learnt how to pronounce words correctly in English, and simple and fun ways of teaching reading to elementary class pupils.
She said the training will go a long way in assisting pupils in public primary schools to pronounce words correctly and improve their reading writing skills.
Another participants, Mrs Banjo Oluwafisayo from Ondo East Local Government Area, who urged the organizers to in future ensure they should provide accommodation for participants who travelled to the training venue from distant LGAs to attend the training programme saying that the training will further improve their reading writing skills.