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Stakeholders united in support of the Memorandum of CAMPE to the Government

Campaign for Popular Education (CAMPE) and Education Watch, representing the non-state education community of Bangladesh, presented a “Memorandum” to the recently elected Government of Bangladesh on January 24, 2024, at the Bangabandhu International Conference Center, Dhaka in a Sharing Meeting titled "Learning for Lasting Peace", coinciding with the "International Day of Education 2024”.

The sharing meeting was organized with the objective of submitting a “Memorandum” to decision makers particularly the Minister of State, Ministry of Women and Children Affairs (MoWCA) and Minister of State, Ministry of Primary and Mass Education (MoPME), recently appointed by the newly elected Government.

Over 150 representatives including government officials, academics, teachers, guardians, students, development partners, civil society organizations, and media participated in the meeting. CAMPE's Executive Director and Member Secretary of Education Watch, Rasheda K Choudhury, moderated the discussion, where students from various underprivileged groups including ethnic communities, disabled and lower income families among others, shared their expectations from the decision makers.

The “Memorandum” included, inter-alia, crucial recommendations such as increased investment in education and its effective utilization, enactment of a comprehensive ‘Education Act’, establishment of a permanent ‘Education Commission’, continuous professional development of teachers, and promotion of literacy, skills development, and lifelong learning.

The recommendations emphasized the need for prevention of child mortality by drowning, addressing impact of climate change in education and nationwide awareness raising activities to ensure proper implementation of the recently reformed curriculum. It also highlighted the need for a user-friendly assessment system for teachers, students, and parents. Other key points included adequate teacher training, timely supply of necessary materials, appropriate classroom preparation, expansion of the mid-day meal program for all primary-level students, increased amount of stipend at both primary and secondary levels. Decentralization in education, increased academic supervision in the classroom, strengthened mentoring and monitoring at various levels, and ensuring community participation were pointed out as essential aspects.

During the event, the State Minister for Primary and Mass Education highlighted mid-day meal program, infrastructural challenges in schools and the issue of child marriage in her speech. She underscored the importance of implementing an efficient assessment system under the newly reformed curriculum, taking into account the higher number of students in the classroom. The State Minister for Women and Children Affairs emphasized the importance of investing more in education and establishment of functional libraries in schools. Drawing from her personal experience, she stressed the need for a “book reading campaign” for children. She also emphasized the urgency of reducing child drowning and child marriage.

CAMPE and Education Watch urged the Government to consider these recommendations, fostering a collective commitment to building a more inclusive and quality education system for a better Bangladesh. The event was organized by CAMPE in cooperation with Education Watch and support from Malala Fund, UK.

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