Malawi Government with support from UNICEF recently launched an Emergency Radio Education Programme (EREP) for the continuity of learning amidst the COVID-19.
The Education Radio Education Programme for Primary Schools has been designed to keep children engaged during the school closure.
Minister of Education Science and Technology Dr. William Sususwele Banda indicated that the programme is for standard 1-8 and the focus is on literacy, numeracy and science.
“These lessons will be aired on Malawi Broadcasting Corporation Radio 1 and 2 and other outlets that will be communicated in due course. Note that plans are there to work with community radios too,” the education minister said.
He further added that there is already online learning for Junior Secondary (Forms 1 and 2).
“These can be accessed on Ministry of Education website; http://www.education.gov.mw. For Senior Secondary (Forms 2 and 3), content is still being developed. In this vein, let me thank Airtel Malawi PLC and TNM PLC for responding positively to a request by Malawi Government to provide free data access of the digital education resources/content uploaded on MoEST website and other related platforms for a period of 1 year, in response to COVID 19 disaster,” Banda said.
Commenting on EREP, UNICEF Malawi Representative Rudolf Schwenk encouraged parents and communities at large to support their children and help them participate in the lessons.
“Make full utilization of this opportunity. UNICEF will continue to collaborate with the government and other partners to reduce learning disparities, while increasing access to quality education.
“Programmes like these, when successfully incorporated into both formal and non-formal education settings, provide children in urban and rural areas, including even those in isolated areas, access to learning opportunities,” Schwenk explained.
He further described the Emergency Radio Education Programme as a groundbreaking and innovative initiative that offers a unique interim solution to keep millions of children in a positive education routine.
In Malawi, schools and colleges were closed on 23rd March, 2020, with a view to protect learners, teachers and parents from contracting Coronavirus.
The closure of the schools and the colleges has disrupted the normal delivery of education to learners and students.