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Literacy and Learning in the Post COVID-19 Phase and Beyond

Education is the fundamental driver of personal, national and global development. No doubt there has been a paradigm shift in the post-COVID phase, but one thing remains unchanged: “the existing gap in all forms of teaching and learning”. Before the COVID 19 pandemic, there were minimal efforts to bridge the existing gap in learning, and no doubt the impact of the pandemic has posed a lot more challenges on education and learning.

Raising concerns on the need to develop strategies for sustainable education and learning, the UNESCO set aside September 8th every year to remind the international community of the importance of literacy for individuals, communities, and societies, and the need for intensified efforts towards improved literacy across the globe.

AIFA Reading Society organised two events in celebration of International Literacy Day.

On Tuesday, September 8, 2020, friends and staff of AIFA Reading Society visited the Ajegunle area of Lagos state to support learning. The Society through the kind support of the Beta Gamma Sigma chapter of the Lagos Business School (LBS) donated educational materials to the library of the Dreams from Slum Empowerment Initiatives for children within the community.

 

Highlights of the event include a talk session where the Society’s representative talked to the students on the essence of making learning a lifelong skill irrespective of life’s challenges. She also advised the children to utilise the learning opportunities made available to them by NGOs, corporate bodies, and individuals for a brighter future.

To colour the day, each child was given the opportunity to read-out interesting poems with the guidance of the Society’s representative. It was a fun and impactful session for the children.

Mr. Isaac Success, the founder, ‘Dreams from the Slum Empowerment Initiatives’ thanked the Society for its donation and the efforts it has extended to the organisation and prayed for more support.

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Though schools and learning institutions may be closed due to the effects of the COVID pandemic, learning must continue.

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To also mark the Day, the Society organized an online interactive session on Twitter on Wednesday, September 9, 2020, where participants carefully and analytically reviewed some questions inspired by UNESCO on repositioning education and learning in the post-COVID phase. They are:

  • What is the impact of COVID19 crisis on teaching and learning?
  • What are the lessons learnt from the impact of the COVID19 crisis on learning?
  • How can we effectively reposition youth and adult literacy learning in post COVID phase?

Not to raise more questions but to share possible solutions here are some tweets from the conversation on our handle @aifareading

“…Embracing technology is a starting point especially mobile technology as a platform referencing the sci-fiction by the Kaduna Secondary School kids and the creativity of the Ikorodu bois…Talent abounds in this rural communities and they may even provide us with solutions.”

“…We must recognize the stakeholders involved…Going forward a complete and thorough analysis should be instituted on the educational system. The ministry of telecommunications and education ministry must sit to open up online learning. Schools capacity must be expanded to accommodate a well-spaced environment.”

“…Call for donation of used devices and sponsorship of resource centers at rural communities by internet providers. Technology innovation is a major aspect of education. We have to devise programmes/projects that is centered on bringing internet to our rural communities. Donation of PC to communities and train a generation…”

“…Every project needs a support system and in a society where you have only a few % of persons who thinks “learning and education, it is even more challenging finding these persons to help support and spread the gospel of literacy.

“…The value system that is gradually de-emphasising the value of learning and education is also a challenge. Kids are likely to hear that a chunk of dollar billionaires are school dropout.

The interactive session which had over 117 engagements and over 2,308 impressions will be of benefit to anyone who comes across the tweets. The Society was able to create awareness on the importance of building and promoting a reading culture and the attainment of sustainable educational development.

#SupportEducation #InternationalLiteracyDay

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