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Mobile schools target rural illiteracy

Majok Mon
Eight mobile schools are driving around rural communities to bring education to 50,000 people from the rural and fishing communities in Lakes State.
15.11.2012  |  Rumbek
A cattle camp in Lakes State, South Sudan.
A cattle camp in Lakes State, South Sudan.

To combat widespread illiteracy in Lakes State, the Ministry of Education has set up eight mobile education centres in four counties.

This education plan targets children and adults aged between 14 and 30 years who missed out education as result of long war between the North and the South,” the state’s Minister of Education Athian Majak Malou said.

Lake State’s Minister of Education, Athian Majak Malou.
© The Niles | Benjamin Majok Mon
He further explained that three out of four children and adults in the central South Sudanese state have no access to education. Children and adults who are pastoralist and fishing communities in the state do not have access to learning environs in the state,” he said.

The mobile schools will follow the cattle caravans and offer flexible lessons, allowing boys to continue herding cattle while girls do domestic work.

More than 2,000 children and adults have already enrolled at the mobile schools.

We follow the cattle herders from place to place with our education materials,” said Peter Yit Meen a pastoralist teacher.

Many people sign up to the mobile schools and subsequently leave because they have to work harder to survive, he said.

Save the Children in South Sudan has said the organisation will open 33 more alternative education systems in Lakes State to address the state’s education shortcomings.

South Sudan’s record on education and illiteracy is among the worst in the world. Girls are particularly unlikely to experience school and 70 percent of children aged 6 to 17 years have never set foot in a classroom.