Learning loss being addressed with EdYou FM launch in Region Eight
In its bid to address the learning loss caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, the Ministry of Education’s National Centre for Educational Resource Development (NCERD), on Thursday, launched its EdYou FM (99.7 FM) in the North Pakaraimas, Region Eight.
The launch falls in line with the government’s objective ‘to provide where necessary equal and equitable distribution of education to Guyana’s children.’
Head of EdYou FM, Phillip Williams, said the ministry is working to bridge the gap caused by the pandemic, which saw children being out of physical classrooms for more than 18 months.
“Our intention is to bring this radio broadcast not just to a specific catchment area, but across the entire nation, leaving no community behind. EdYou FM is just one [of the many] vehicles [that] the ministry is using to drive distance education,” he told DPI Thursday.
He said EdYou FM in its mandate, makes learning content available to children on the coastland and hinterland. This includes far-flung riverine communities and children in the highland and forested regions.
“EdYou FM is the first station to bring radio broadcast directly to the North Pakaraimas, specifically for educational purposes, and our efforts to bring radio broadcast are not just limited to Kato in particular or the North Pakaraimas; in fact, EdYou FM began broadcasting in communities like Orealla, Siparuta, Annai, Ituni, Kwakwani, Port Kaituma, Anna Regina, … [now] the North Pakaraimas providing content to children all across Guyana.”
He said the Potaro-Siparuni Region is by far the most challenging region to access because of the region’s mountainous geographical layout.
In this case, “far more often than not, it requires aircraft to get to the villages within this region or ATV on miles of rugged terrain. [This is] not ideal for daily transportation. Therefore, our children cannot easily access the secondary schools available in Kato, Paramakatoi, and Mahdia as easily, nor can they traverse as often as they prefer”.
EdYou FM offers radio broadcast lessons for children at the primary level. Content for nursery is also available. The station is currently creating content for the secondary level. Lessons include, but are notlimited to the four core subjects Maths,Language, Science, and Social Studies, as well as numeracy, literacy, and religious education, among others.
“We also have three live programmes in the mornings, middays, and afternoons, as well as a women empowerment programme and a youth empowerment programme. The station is still in its developmental stages and continues to work on bringing more programmes.”
In addition, EdYou FM will be launching its interactive website that will be accessible by both computers and mobile devices.
Learners will be able to stream the radio content live on their devices.
This is a promise being fulfilled by the PPP/C Government, whose manifesto’s promise is based on a ‘transformational agenda’.