Eradicating Illiteracy in Kenya

January 23, 2019

  • Literacy has a multiplier effect which makes it a common factor in eradicating poverty, social

    seclusion, reduce child mortality, achieve sustainability and gender equality. There has been an

    improvement in the number of schools built in the sub-county regions. However, some of the

    rural areas are experiencing extreme cases of illiteracy. As a country we are always dealing with

    mismanagement of government funds, teachers’ strike, and inequality in the education sector and

    poor training of teachers which leads to investing much to retrain them. As we are battling all

    these issues, most children are struggling with illiteracy. Here are a few pointers that might help

    to eradicate the problem:

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     Creation of awareness among people in the rural areas. Illiteracy especially in north

    eastern has prompted people to miss out on opportunities such as health because they lack

    the basic skills of reading and writing. For example, a while back ‘The Standard’,

    covered an article of how some of the adults could not even understand what was written

    on their hospital cards. Government agencies should partner with social institutions to

    create awareness on issues such as the importance for education equality among girls and

    boys, early pregnancies and female genital mutilation among other issues that are literacy

    inhibited.

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     Building of community-based libraries in the illiteracy prone areas will provide an equal

    opportunity for both children and adults to access information. Lack of reading materials

    is a primary factor leading to illiteracy. Community-based libraries will not only

    contribute to individual growth but also social and economic development within the

    region.

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     A high number of parents are either middle-class or low-class income earner. The cost of

    living has increased in the recent years making it difficult for some families to afford

    such basic needs. The government should focus on an independent, free school

    curriculum that allows young people to acquire the basic school skills. Continuous

    disbursement of funds towards the education sector should also be considered.

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     A shift from single model of learning that only focuses on the reading and writing skills

    should be avoided. Institutions should incorporate a wider dimension that allows students

    to explore their talents and skills. Various literacy practices are embedded in the different

    personal circumstances, cultural processes and collective cultures that can improve the

    overall skill set of a learner.

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    Conclusion
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    We still have a long way to go as a nation in eradicating illiteracy levels. However, we are on the

    right path both on an individual level through donations of books and volunteering to create

    awareness and supporting the government to contribute to the course.

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