By Augustine Sankoh, Strategic Communications Analyst, MBSSE
The Ministry of Basic and Senior Secondary Education (MBSSE) with support from the United Nation Children’s Fund (UNICEF) will be constructing twenty-nine (29) Early Childhood Development (ECD) Centres in Karene and Moyamba Districts.
According to Mr. Emmanuel Alie, the National Coordinator Global Partnership for Education, 20 0f these centres will be constructed in Karene and the remaining 9 in Moyamba District.
He said evaluation and assessment of bids is in progress by UNICEF which is the grant agent.
He said last year in September, MBSSE completed the construction of 30 new ECD centres in three districts (Bombali, Pujehun and Kambia) in Sierra Leone which according to him open doors to an estimated 2,100 children that benefitted.
The ECD landscape in Sierra Leone has been fraught with challenges and poor outcomes. Sierra Leone has one of the highest maternal, new-born and under five mortality rates, stunting, high rates of poverty, and poor learning outcomes globally.
The current government’s commitment to human capital development, enables the country to achieve middle income status by 2035; it is necessary for governments to prioritizeinvestment in ECD. The development of a clear policy framework to provide directions and guidance for structuring equitable access to quality ECD cannot be overemphasized.
This national Integrated Early Childhood Development (IECD) policy provides an overarching framework with shared vision, mission, goals, and objectives for the delivery of holistic ECD interventions and services for all children ages 0 to 8 years; and ensures that all Sierra Leonean children have the best start in life and are able to achieve their full potential.
Early Childhood Development is about the overall wellbeing and welfare of a child as it encompasses the child’s cognitive, language, social, emotional, and motor development. Early Childhood Development (ECD) is recognized as a critical foundation for fostering positive lifelong outcomes, human capital development and sustainable national development.
Copyright © Heroes Media Newspaper