Deputy Minister of Education, Madalitso Kambauwa has hailed the Malawi Education Sector Improvement Project (MESIP) for increasing school enrolment especially that of girls.

The World Bank funded project has seen primary schools in 12 districts receiving grants that they use to construct additional learning and sanitation structures and also buying of teaching and learning materials.

During an inspection visit to Lisasadzi and Chamunya Primary schools in Kasungu, on Tuesday, she commended the project for helping retain learners in primary schools by according them good learning environment.

“This is a good project because in several schools it has increased access and attendance to education through high number of learners being enrolled,” she said.

In the past learners used to shun classes because of poor learning environment, and for girls it was because of lack of sanitary facilities especially when they are having their monthly periods,” she said.

Through MESIP the schools have added extra classroom blocks and changing rooms for girls.

Head teacher for Lisasadzi Primary School, Abraham Lungu, said with MESIP support at the school there is an improvement in the delivery of teaching services.

“Pupils were staying at home because of lack of proper structures are now back in school. We never had an enrolment exceeding 1000 but now we boast of over 1244 learners of which 629 are girls,” he added.

For the girls, mother groups play a vital role in making sure the girls have relevant materials in the changing rooms like sanitary pads, soap and water.

Among others the project has components that focus on performance-based school improvement grants for improving promotion and retention,

The project seeks to improve equity for the most disadvantaged, including girls and improving learning outcomes, accountability, and cost-effectiveness at school level.

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