GHS/General Paper/Universal Primary Education

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Universal Primary Education (UPE) is an education system in Uganda where pupils in Primary Education are sponsored partly by government and their parents .The latter play very peripheral roles such as footing meals for these children and the like.By and large it is a good program albeit with a few short comings.We would like to highlight its pros and cons in the subsquent ages.

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By the end of the lesson, students should be able to:

  • Determine atleast 4 merits of universal primary education.
  • Explain atleast 4 demerits of universal primary education.
  • State 4 challenges faced by universal primary education implementers.

The merits of Universal Primary Education

  1. One the merits of this global program is that it has enabled most able bodied and mentally stable school-going children acquire formal educaion.This in itself is crucial in that it breeds a crop of educated people right from that nascent age of one's development.An educated society is an informed one ready to appreciate government and other policies intended for community well-being.
  2. International relations are likely to be augmented by the program especially between donor and recipient countries.
  3. Enables the one of the marginalised groups of society,the girl-child acquire formal education.This is one the Millenium Development goals.
  4. Illiteracy is dealt a death blow!
  5. Socialisation is enhanced,as people of different groups and gender mix.

The demerits of Universal Primary Education

Having looked at the merits of universal primary education, one needs to critically examine the other side of the coin;the demrits. It would be entirely naive to assume that UPE has only brought good things.
  1. Universal Primary Education is associated with scant resources especially in rural areas.These resources include reading and sitting matrials, not to mention the astronomical numbers each class has.In Primary one it is common to find classes that comprise between one hundred and two hundred pupils!This scenario has a negative impact on the quality and quantity of education received owing to the fact that pupil-teacher ratio is big.
  2. There are ocassions when children have to travel long distances in quest for free eduction.This could be disastrous in terms of the psychological and physiological needs to pupils that are still young!
  3. The childs are sometims not taught very well.
  4. There is overcrowding.
  5. There is very little or sometimes no motivation at all in Uganda's case.
  6. Children are in most rural areas not given lunch.
  7. There is little or no supervision and monitoring done.

The challenges faced in the Universal Primary Education programme

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There are a number of challenges that are faced in trying to implement the UPE program in Uganda. Such challenges range from those affecting the implementers to those affecting the students.

The challenges affecting the program implementers

The implementers of the program including the directors of the schools (the school administrators) and the District Education Officers (DEO). Among the challenges that these people are faced with include:

  1. Poor management of funds; usually the people that are put in-charge of managing the funds directed to the school administration, and education purposes are usually corrupt. They divert the funds to their own benefits.
  2. Lack of good financial support; The national budget cannot support the program 100%, so the government tries to look for funding from elsewhere.


Gayaza High School students visiting one of the Universal Primary Schools
If all secondary schools would partner with one or two partner school, and assist them in various activities....

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