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U.S. Government supports early grade learning in local languages with Minister of Education and Human Development
February 21, 2020 – Matutuine – The U.S. Government proudly participated in an official ceremony celebrating International Mother Languages Day in Matutine District of Maputo Province. The U.S. Government was represented at the event by United States Agency for International Development (USAID) Mission Director Jennifer Adams, while Minister of Education and Human Development (MINEDH) Carmelita Rita Namashulua represented the Government of the Republic of Mozambique. Secretary of State for Maputo Province Vitoria Dias Diogo and Governor of Maputo Province Julio Parruque also participated. The event served to highlight the importance of local languages in Mozambique to preserve cultural diversity and build a more inclusive society. The event also highlighted the Mozambican Government’s bilingual education programs, which are supported through U.S. Government funding.
The U.S. Government, through USAID, partners with MINEDH to improve education quality and outcomes focused particularly on early grade reading in local languages. It also works with parents, local schools, community members and civil society organizations to increase engagement in early grade reading and to reduce the obstacles that impede girls from attending and completing secondary school. More than 800,000 Mozambican children benefit from these projects. USAID assists the Mozambican government review nationwide education policies and implement proven learning tools and instructional approaches to help Mozambican children better learn to read.
At the event, USAID Mission Director Jennifer Adams congratulated the Mozambican Government on the implementation of its bilingual education curriculum: “Through our partnership to date, nearly a million primary school children in Nampula and Zambézia have early grade reading materials in Emakhuwa, Echuwabo, and Elomwe so they can learn to read and write in the language they speak at home. More than 3,000 administrators have been trained to better manage their schools and 7,000 teachers to better manage their classrooms and implement an early reading bilingual curriculum. To date, 993 school councils have been strengthened to improve school management and service delivery.” She also stressed that evidence shows when children are taught first in their local language: “They will learn and experience success more quickly, which is key for them to feel motivated to participate in class, come to school and successfully complete primary education.”
Education projects represent a critical component of the broader U.S. Government’s assistance program in Mozambique. In close collaboration with the Government of the Republic of Mozambique, the U.S. Government provides more than $500 million in annual assistance to improve the quality of education and healthcare, promote economic prosperity, and support the overall development of the nation.
The United States Agency for International Development (USAID) leads the U.S. Government’s international development and disaster assistance through partnerships and investments that save lives, reduce poverty, strengthen democratic governance, and help people emerge from humanitarian crises. For more information about USAIDs work to foster sustainable development and advance human dignity visit www.usaid.gov.
For more information about this press release, please contact the U.S. Embassy Maputo Press Office at MaputoPress@state.gov.