Empowering rural disadvantaged pupils using Community Radio

Ssenabulya, James S
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Radio broadcasting is a powerful tool that enables communication to many isolated rural villages and towns in developing countries. For many of these rural communities, radio broadcasts are often the only effective way to solicit important information to a large audience. // Most recently in Uganda, and Nakaseke in particular, community operated educational programmes are being broadcast to remote localities in an effort to reach students that have limited access to educational resources. // Innovation: Collaboration with Teachers and other Education Managers. // Education as one the station’s main programme foci and considering the low literacy levels and poor academic performance of pupils in the impoverished district, the radio embarked on an effort to find a solution to the challenge. This was through collaboration with education managers at district level and teachers. // The radio provided space and availed airtime for the show and the teachers formed an examination board and came up with a question bank, where examiners chose questions for the day. // Lots of challenges were experienced in the process ranging from training teachers in the use of the technology i.e; equipment handling, modulation, recording and other areas to facilitation. In-house trainings were conducted and the spirit of voluntarism and ownership was slowly developed and now teachers feel part of the station. // With this collaboration and division of roles, schools are registered, seeded and drawn into groups after which competition starts. The program runs live once every week as three schools are hosted, each represented by two pupils in a live question and answer session, conducted by a panel of examiners. The winning school advance to a next round and the process continues up to the final stage. // According to assessments and evaluations conducted every year by the station, district education authorities and the Teachers’ Union to determine the progress of the sector in the district, the competition has helped in; • Promoting confidence among the learners • Raising the academic standards in the district. • Increasing the number of first grades. • Enabling teachers to evaluate their teaching • Exposing the pupils to an educational environment beyond the classroom. // Paper ID: 25

Technology and Innovation,Community Radio,Collaboration,Empowerment