School Reopening; Teachers Yet to Receive New O’Level Curriculum Guide

Written by on January 10, 2022

Several teachers implementing the new lower secondary curriculum are stuck on how to conduct lessons due to the lack of resource books to guide them. The most affected are teachers in the pioneer class, currently the senior two class.

Teachers that talked to our reporters noted that the Ministry of Education and Sport had not yet delivered textbooks, syllabus, and learners guides for implementing the lower secondary curriculum.

The senior two class for the 2022 academic year will comprise learners who have been automatically promoted from senior one. Alice Mirembe, a teacher in Masaka City, notes that when the ministry rolled out the new curriculum in 2020, the government only provided prototype materials for the S.1 class.

“The senior one books were also not enough and before the lockdown, teachers were asking the ministry to widely provide these materials given the fact that content in many subject syllabi had changed. with delays some teachers were left with one option of teaching their learners using the old curriculum material,” says Mirembe.

She adds that after the outcry, the National Curriculum Development Centre uploaded the material for senior one on its website.  Ronald Kasadha, the Deputy Headteacher Namirembe Hillside high school in Wakiso district, says that after two years government has not provided materials for senior two. He says that fellow teachers found it difficult to prepare teaching material for the same.

Kasadha wonders how the government expects them to teach learners without major instructional materials like textbooks and learner’s guides, which are the primary resource books in the teaching-learning process.

In 2020, the ministry revealed plans to distribute 3.4 million textbooks to all secondary schools as part of the efforts to promote the new O’Level curriculum. However, by the end of 2021, the government had not yet secured the books whose printing was outsourced.

When the ministry rolls out a new curriculum, it’s upon them to re-train all teachers on how to handle it and supply instructional and reading materials for its implementation in both private and public schools.

Dr Denis Mugimba, the ministry of education spokesperson, says although the books have delayed reaching some schools, the government has already secured over 6 million copies of instructional materials worth Shillings 30 billion for both senior one and senior two classes.

Dr Mugimba who showed our reporter some of the books noted that the distribution process has already started. He, however, confirmed the delayed distribution given the fact that some of the trucks transporting the textbooks are still awaiting clearance at the Uganda-Kenya border.

Our reporters visited some schools that have so far received the books where teachers expressed dissatisfaction with the few books delivered for selected subjects. Lawrence Ssemujju, the director of studies at City secondary school, said that a few copies of textbooks were delivered on Friday afternoon.

He said that out of the 20 subjects taught in the new curriculum, they were only books for six subjects. He says that they missed out on core subjects like biology, chemistry, mathematics, History among others.
The situation was no different at Wampewo secondary school. According to the delivery note, the school received textbooks for six subjects in S.2 class including physics, geography, general science. Swahili, technology and design, and Islamic religious education. They also received five subjects for senior one material.

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