The Ministry of Education, Science and Technology has admitted that many learners, especially in the lower primary school classes, face difficulties in reading and writing; hence the need for interventions to improve the situation.
Speaking during the handover ceremony of the Read Malawi (Werenga Malawi) Programme from the United States Government to the Malawi Government at the Lilongwe Teachersâ€™ Training College on Tuesday, Ministry of Education Principal Secretary John Bisika said for Malawians to develop a reading culture they must start while still young.
He said the programme responds to the needs of the Ministry of Education, Science and Technology to support the National Primary Curriculum in Standard 1, 2 and 3 for improved reading and developing a culture of readers and writers.
“Programmes such as Read Malawi! will definitely empower most of our students to effectively read and write and develop a reading culture,” said Bisika.
According to Bisika, children should not only be taught how to read, but they must be given something to read if they are to become responsible citizens.
Doug Arbuckle of the United State Agency for International Development (Usaid) said that the Read Malawi! project has been part of a portfolio of activities and technical assistance reflecting significant US contributions to the Malawiâ€™s education sector nationwide.
Since 2001, Usaid support to Malawiâ€™s education sector has totalled about $80.6 million (about K22 billion), according to Arbuckle.
Read Malawi! is a three-year programme funded by Usaid under a cooperation agreement with the University of Texas at San Antonio (UTSA). It is part of Usaid Africa initiative.