English Remains a Problem

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By Frederick Philander

WINDHOEK

An English language proficiency programme of the Ministry of Education was yesterday officially launched in the capital in the presence of a number of inspectors and regional education directors.

The official launch was done by the Deputy Minister of Education, Dr Becky Ndjoze-Ojo.

“A study into the proficiency in English of a representative sample of Namibian teachers that took place in 1990 has shown that the majority of teachers had low levels of English proficiency. It was further found that 95% of college trainee student teachers did not have sufficiently developed reading skills to cope with their studies, let alone to teach others,” said Ndjoze-Ojo.

She urged NIED to tackle this problem and issue as a mater of urgency.
“Various studies have also shown that less than 17% of learners reached the minimum level of reading competency, leaving 75% of our learners without reading skills and thus without the necessary tools to access knowledge and thereby failing,” she said.

The programme was launched as part of ETSIP, currently under way to improve the education system in the country.

“The programme is aimed at bringing about a conducive environment through which English proficiency levels could be raised to acceptable standards and levels over the next five years to enable teachers to teach better, learn better and thereby qualitatively improve the education system at input, output and outcome levels,” Ndjoze-Ojo, who encouraged the private sector to join hands with the Government, concluded.

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