afrol News, 2 October - The World Bank last week approved a US$ 4 million Learning and Innovation Loan to support the government of Morocco in boosting adult literacy in communities and in the workplace. Over 50 percent of Morocco's adult population is suffering from low literacy rates.
Morocco had the lowest adult literacy rate in North Africa. With these unflattering literacy statistics, the government of Morocco recently set a target to reduce adult illiteracy by one-half by 2010.
In response to Morocco’s efforts to meet this target, the learning and innovation initiative is supposed to test new approaches to literacy learning and program management, which if proven effective, may enable the government to implement nationwide programmes that can result in lasting literacy outcomes.
The government of Morocco offers four literacy programs, which have enrolled more than one million adults aged sixteen and above since 1995. Two of the programs are provided through government agencies, one in cooperation with the private sector and one in partnership with nongovernmental organisations (NGOs).
The World Bank loan is to concentrate support on the NGO program "where enrolment is highest and which addresses the needs of the poorest population, particularly women and girls in rural areas," a Bank statement says.
- This project offers the Moroccan government the opportunity to work alongside local literacy providers, in communities and in the workplace, to explore new ways of teaching and learning and new ways of managing programs in an increasingly decentralized environment, said Jeffrey Waite, the World Bank’s Senior Education Specialist for the Middle East and North Africa region.
- In this way, the government aims to find cost-effective methods for increasing literacy levels, thereby improving social and economic opportunities for currently disadvantaged Moroccans, he added.
According to the World Bank, The learning and innovation loan falls in line with the Bank's country assistance strategy for Morocco, which focuses on alleviating poverty, with a special focus on rural areas, through policies that support human development.
Sources: Based on World Bank and afrol archives