By Segun Awofadeji in Bauchi
The United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) has appealed to the Bauchi State Government to invest at least 5 per cent of the allocated budget for early childhood and pre-primary education.
The Chief of field office, UNICEF, Bauchi, Bhanu Pathank disclosed this Thursday at a two-day workshop on Policy Dialogue on Pre-Primary Education held at the Command Guest House, Bauchi.
The Advocacy meeting was organised by the Bauchi State Universal Basic Education Board (SUBEB) in collaboration with UNICEF, Field Office, Bauchi.
Pathank said that UNICEF has a vision to collaborate with government institutions, civil society organisations, faith-based organisations and development partners to discuss issues around early childhood education (ECE), hence the advocacy policy dialogue meeting with education stakeholders in the state.
He said that the main objective of the workshop was to create awareness on the importance of early years of a child from prenatal phase to transition into primary education.
He maintained that it was a common knowledge that early childhood development in the life of a child was as crucial and fundamental as it greatly influences thier personality in the early stage of life.
According to him, “Bauchi State with political will, investment and focus on equity to reach every child should be able to get access to improved quality of education.
“Nevertheless, there are still some issues that still need the attention of the state government which include 34% of children in pre-primary schools and low number of primary schools, low number of pre-primary teachers and pupil classroom ratio which is unfavorable for effective teaching and learning process.”