Africa-Press – Uganda. A source close to the Ministry of Education and Sports has revealed that the printing of instruction material such as textbooks for the new lower secondary school curriculum is taking place in India.
The source said although some local companies were contracted to publish, most of the printing is being done in India.“We are working with the ministry’s instruction material unit and the process to buy the textbooks from publishers is ongoing,” the source said.
Last year, local companies queried and protested a move by the Electoral Commission to procure foreign companies to print ballot papers for the recently concluded General Election, despite government efforts to promote local industries.
The new lower secondary school curriculum was rolled out in February last year but was interrupted by the closure of schools due to the outbreak of Covid-19 in March.
Senior One learners, the pioneers of the curriculum, who resumed school on April 12, are continuing with the curriculum without textbooks or teachers guides and it is not clear when the material will be available to schools. They are expected to complete the academic year in July before joining Senior Two in August.
The teachers have been using the prototypes that were developed by the National Curriculum Development Centre.Mr Alex Kakooza, the Permanent Secretary at the Ministry of Education, said: “We have finished evaluation. The companies that were awarded tenders are local companies. Fountain Publishers is one of them, New Vision is another and many other local companies. I do not know whether New Vision prints from outside the country.”
Last week, the Ministry of Education officials presented Shs48b budget shortfall that they say may affect the implementation of the new curriculum.