No fewer than 242,214 girls have been enrolled into primary one in Katsina State following the successes recorded by the Girls Education Project (GEP) 3 Enrollment Campaign at community levels under the UNICEF.
Mr Kabir Lawal, the Director, Planning, Research and Statistics, State Ministry of Education, on Tuesday disclosed this during the 2019 Mid-Year UNICEF Review Meeting for Kano and Katsina States that held in Kano.
He said the figure represented 39.8 per cent of the targeted girls’ enrolment as contained in the state Annual Schools Census (ASC) for 2018/2019 and Enrolment Drive Validation.
Lawal also said that 456,017 pupils (boys and girls) were enrolled into primary one ‘at right age’, representing 44.0 per cent, as against the set target of 62.8 per cent.
He said the programme targeted to provide 69,855 individual children (one-per-child) with early learning materials through the UNICEF support programmes.
Lawal, however, said that only 17,122 children were provided with Light Literacy Books to improve on their early grade reading skills.
The director said that insecurity challenge in some focal local government areas like Batsari, Safana, Faskari, Sabuwa, Kankara and Jibia was threatening pupils from attending schools.
He further said that it was also affecting step down training for the programme and school monitoring.
According to him, the delay in release of UNICEF funds for the first and second quarters was hindering the implementation of the programme as scheduled.
On the way forward, he said staff in the education sector should initiate advocacy visits to the state governor and the commissioner for education to highlight some key issues to them that were affecting the programme implementation.
Lawal further urged UNICEF to ensure prompt release of funds for first and second quarters in January of every year, and start procurement process early to meet the plans.