Factors Contributing to the Low Participation of Adults in literacy programmes:a case of kabwe and mufumbwe Districts of Zambia

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Kamocha, Henry
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The study’s main purpose was to investigate the factors contributing to low participation of adults in literacy programmes in Kabwe and Mufumbwe Districts. Whilst the focus was on the low participation of adults in literacy programmes, the study looked into the challenge as to whether the 50 per cent adult illiteracy reduction target (EFA Goal number 4) would be achieved within the stipulated period, 2015. The study provides a panoramic view of the Global Adult Literacy and a historical perspective on Adult Literacy Programmes hitherto, in Zambia. This was done to give a background for the most important research issues discussed at length later in the study. From among others, the Freirian theory was the preferred theoretical framework for this study, to make clear the theory and practices in the provision of adult literacy. The literature discussed in this work is wide, reflecting the purposes of the study and presenting explanations for the issues, which the research questions posed. The objectives of this study sought to investigate factors contributing to the low participation of adults in literacy programmes in Kabwe and Mufumbwe Districts, to assess the responsiveness of the curriculum to the skills training needs of participants, and to identify the challenges affecting the enrollment of adult learners in both urban and rural settings. The target population in this study was all adults aged 15 and above participating in literacy programmes in Kabwe and Mufumbwe Districts. In order to explore the research questions in the contexts relevant to this study, the qualitative methodology was predominantly used. The sample size comprised 100 respondents. These included 90 participants, 6 teachers and 4 Community Development Officers. The methods employed to collect were interviews, classroom observations, field notes and document analysis. The data were analyzed by categorizing expressed opinions using the explanatory and descriptive comparison. This study brought out not only the analogies between Kabwe and Mufumbwe Districts, but also investigated the causes. wherever possible the study delved into establishing the participation trends in adult literacy in each of these areas in a dynamic manner by sharing perspective experiences and making recommendations to what could be gleaned from relevant findings for further works. The study established that lack of a National Policy, limited investment in adult literacy, lack of monitoring and evaluation mechanism, lack of facilities for the visually impaired illiterate adults as some of the core factors influencing the low participation of adults in literacy programmes. Other factors were poor infrastructure, inadequate learning and human resources, non-responsive curriculum and absence of NGOs providing adult literacy in these areas. To this extent, the suggested recommendations were that the government should formulate a National Policy on Adult Literacy to promote high adult participation in literacy programmes. The government should implement the decentralized system of disbursing financial resources. To enhance efficient service delivery, there is need to allocate adequate financial resources to the department... There is need to avoid a duplication of programmes and minimize operational costs because all poverty and disease related programmes being run separately by the MCDSS are because of illiteracy. The government should formulate a statutory National Council for Adult Literacy that will be monitoring and evaluating the programme. The government should formulate a policy of inclusion in order to cater for people living with disabilities whose special educational needs are acute. There is need to provide adequate and suitable learning resources to mitigate their vulnerability. The adult literacy curriculum should be responsive to the skills training needs of the participant. There is need to remove the gender-bias nature in the provision of adult literacy. The government should encourage NGOs providing adult literacy to extend their services to areas where the government’s presence is not available.
Literacy programs , Elementary Education and Adults