Mrs Museveni explained that following consultations with Cabinet, the Education Ministry was guided not to halt the rollout because it was too late to change the plan. She also said it was Cabinet’s view to continue discussing the curriculum with Parliament until an agreement is reached.
Speaker of Parliament Rebecca Kadaga has disagreed with legislators mainly from the opposition over a statement presented by the Education and Sports
Minister Janet Museveni on the revised lower secondary curriculum.
The Minister delivered
a statement in parliament on Thursday explaining why the
Ministry of Education went ahead to roll out the new curriculum in disregard of
the parliamentary resolution halting its implementation. Parliament halted implementation of the curriculum this year on grounds that it was rushed and required more
consultation of stakeholders.
Developed by the National Curriculum Development
Centre (NCDC), the curriculum replaces termly exams with projects that students
will undertake every end of a topic. Teachers
will then be required to note the student’s progress before any other topic is
introduced and administer end of year exams.
In her statement, Mrs Museveni noted that the Ministry couldn’t
change the plan to roll-out the curriculum without a Cabinet decision, which is the policy-making
organ of the government.
She explained that
following consultations with Cabinet, the
Education Ministry was guided not to halt the rollout because it was too late to change the plan. She also said it was Cabinet’s view to
continue discussing the curriculum with Parliament until an agreement is
“Honorable members, the current curriculum for
lower secondary education has been in existence since colonial times. It is
largely knowledge-based with little emphasis on skills and values and
therefore, it is inadequate to address the issues faced by the learners of
today and the social-economic needs of our country,” she said.
said that the revised lower secondary curriculum will promote effective
learning and acquisition of skills, reduce subject and content overload and
address the needs of all students.
Janet Museveni told MPs that an effective
curricular is supposed to prepare a learner to be a global citizen and that adequate consultations were made on the new lower Secondary Curriculum between 2016 and 2018 and earlier before it was approved.
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The consultations involved Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni, the education committee of parliament,
regional Chairpersons of Secondary Schools, the Head
teachers’ Association, Vice-Chancellors from both public and private
Teachers’ Colleges, schools of Education from both public
private universities, some Parents and learners, religious
institutions and cultural institutions, among others.
But her statement irked a cross-section of Opposition legislators. Kira Municipality
MP, Ibrahim Ssemujju Nganda said that the parliament had
demanded a statement on why the Minister defied its resolution and not a
statement briefing them on steps taken to defy the parliamentary resolution.
He argued that the Minister’s statement was not provided for under the Rules of
Procedure because the content presented had earlier been
provided by the State Minister for Primary Education, Rosemary Sseninde.
However, Speaker requested that the Statement
is received as is.
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Amid applause from the ruling
government side, Kadaga insisted that the Minister’s statement had responded to issues earlier
raised by Parliament.
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However, the Shadow Attorney General, Wilfred
Niwagaba said that the earlier decision of parliament to halt the
implementation of the curriculum had not been addressed by the Minister’s
statement. He suggested that the statement be expunged from the record of parliament since its details had earlier been provided.
said that the decision of Parliament was not being reconsidered.
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Shadow Education Minister Mathias Mpuuga
said the statement gives highlights of some of the issues raised by parliament
but falls short of explaining the details of why parliament decided to halt its rollout.
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Erute South MP, Jonathan Odur also wondered what
would happen to an earlier resolution of parliament to halt the curriculum, to which Kadaga maintained that the issues that led to the resolution had been covered in the statement.
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The Prime Minister, Ruhakana Rugunda explained
that Cabinet decided to roll out the curriculum since there was readiness by
the Minister to start.
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Kadaga cut the debate short saying parliament
had requested for information which had been given. The fresh
disagreement follows an earlier meeting between President, Yoweri Museveni and
Speaker Rebecca, ahead of the discussion on the curriculum.