As part of the European Union’s support to the Education Sector in Sierra Leone, the Minister of Basic and Senior Secondary Education, Dr. Moinina David Sengeh in the presence of EU, National Authorising Office, Teaching Service Commission, Sierra Leone Teachers Union and Civil Society Organisations delivered Laboratory Equipment and Accessories to the Prince of Wales Secondary School in Freetown. The delivery of this laboratory equipment and accessories is part of a lager package that 26 other schools across the country are beneficiaries of.
In September 2021, when President Julius Maada Bio was commissioning the 100 rehabilitated, reconstructed and constructed schools in rural areas in the four districts of Bo, Kenema, Port Loko and Bombali under the project “European Union Support to the Education Sector in Sierra Leone” he made the commitment that laboratory equipment will be provided to enhance science practical in rural and urban schools to help improve education outcomes. Science practical in schools had been a perennial problem impacting pupils’ success in science subjects.
Minister of Basic and Senior Secondary School Education (MBSSE), Dr Moinina David Sengeh, thanked the EU for providing the laboratory equipment and accessories to enhanced science education in the country especially in rural areas where these facilities are nonexistence for several years now.
Dr. Sengeh said this laboratory equipment and accessories mark an important milestone in the accomplishment of President Bio’s flagship programme for Human Capital Development in Sierra Leone. He said the commissioning of these items is a big deal for the growing number of school children developing interest in sciences as a result of the Government’s Free Quality Education programme. Dr. Sengeh further mentioned that Sierra Leone is the only country where girls that are offering sciences are fully funded by government. He said this year more girls applied for science courses that boys.
Speaking on the project scope of beneficiaries for the laboratory equipment and accessories, NAO Director, Ambrose James said seven additional schools in the western area will benefit with the provision of laboratory equipment and accessories and the remaining nineteen across other regions. He said the laboratory equipment and accessory items delivered includes calipers, screw gauges, voltmeters, microscopes, thermometers, conclave lenses, test tubes, tripods, measuring cylinders, reagents etc.
The overall objective of the support is to contribute to government’s efforts to provide equitable access to high quality learning for children in Sierra Leone, in line with the national education policies and targets.
Ambrose James said the project rehabilitated and upgraded 155 school buildings, constructed 19 new buildings including Libraries, Science and Computer Laboratories, constructed/rehabilitated 282 toilets for girls, boys and staff, constructed/rehabilitated 78 hand dug wells, constructed/rehabilitated 9 Staff Quarters and supplied and installed 50 Solar Units. Ambrose further informed the audience that 31,588 sets of classroom furniture were distributed to over 472 schools including targeted and non-targeted schools in the respective districts.
He said the project provided 2,975 Library chairs, 320 Library desks, 600 bookshelves, 420 Laboratory Desks and 168 Laboratory Stools. Ambrose James ended up saying the NAO attaches a lot of importance to this project as it dovetails with the President’s flagship programme which places premium on human capital development.
The project is also aligned with the strategic objects of the Education Sector Plan (ESP) 2014-2018, ESP 2018-2020 and the Free Quality School Education programme, the programme is also aligned with the 2019 endorsed Medium Term National Development Plan, which put a renewed emphasis on Education and Capital Development.
At the National Authorising Office (NAO) we continue to facilitate GOSL-EU development cooperation for the benefit of Sierra Leone.