UBEC stresses imperatives of pre-primary school care for wards
Investment in Early Childhood Care Development and Education (ECCDE)/pre-primary should be prioritised as the early years are critical for the child’s mental, physical and psychological development, representative of Universal Basic Education Commission (UBEC), Mr. Akpanossom Udoh has said.
Udo stated this in a presentation entitled: “Early Childhood Development in Kogi State: Equity and quality” in advocacy visit on Fast-Tracking of Early Childhood Care Development and Education (ECCDE) in the UBE programme that took place in Lokoja yesterday.
The programme was put together by UBEC in collaboration with the Federal Ministry of Education and the Civil Society Coalition For All (CSACEFA).
Udo who was quoting from a scientific survey carried out by Shonkoff and Phillips in 2000 said the early years also play major role in early stimulation of intelligence, personality formation and social behaviour.
According to him, “Much of a child’s brain architecture is ‘wired’ in the first five years of life which leaves little room for adjustment later in life. “Most of adult mental ability is formed in the first three years of life with about half of that before birth (80% of brain growth).
He said the quality of life for a child and the contributions the child makes to society as an adult can be traced to the first few years of life.
Udo said pre-primary school pupils are well prepared for school and has acquired sufficient cognitive and language skills in addition to being emotionally prepared and healthy than children who went straight to primary school. He added that such children have less chances of repeating any grade or dropping out of school.
“This fact is recognised in both the National Policy on Education (1977 and revised editions of 2013), the UBE act (2004) which gave the mandate that every public primary school should have pre-primary school linkage to cater for children of age bracket of 3-5 years.”