Education for All Coalition Sierra Leone consults CSOs on the Reviewed National Youth Policy


November 7, 2018

By Mohamed Konneh

Stakeholders at the roundtable

Education For All Coalition Sierra Leone (EFA-SL) has held a roundtable meeting with Civil Society Organisations, including Centre for the Coordination of Youth Activities (CCYA), Sierra Leone Union on Disability Issues (SLUDI), Talented Young People Everywhere Sierra Leone (TYPE-SL), Social Linkages for Youth Development and Child Links (SLYDCL), Centre for Action and the Restoration of Lives (CARL) and Youth and Child Advocacy Network (YACAN) to discuss and seek justification for further review of the reviewed Youth Policy, with specific reference to section 4.2 of the reviewed policy which speaks about Education Sector Development and Youth Empowerment.

The roundtable meeting was held Friday, 2nd November, at the EFA-SL secretariat at Robert Street in Freetown.

Speaking to the selected participant organisations, National Coordinator EFA-SL, Joseph Cobinah said the activity was a major requirement of the SAHEL Education Advocacy programme supported by the OXFAM, which mandates EFA-SL to work with other CSOs to identify gaps in the reviewed Youth Policy document and approach policy makers with very meaningful recommendations on how implementation at various levels dealing with section 4.2 in the Reviewed Youth Policy could be enhanced.

Cobinah also reiterated EFA-SL’s commitment to continuing to draw the attention of policy makers and duty bearers specifically to section 2 sub-section 2 of the Education ACT, which talks about the 6-3-3-4 system of education, and section 9 sub-section 9, which talks about technical vocational education.

The meeting was facilitated by way of a short brainstorming exercise on what the gaps and limitations are, what can be made to be more effective and what can be changed.

Feedback from the participating organisations addressed a whole range of issues, including the need for more recommendations on how to source revenue and mobilise the right resources for education financing, no baseline on youth illiteracy rates, no actual statistical data on what change would look like in terms of real targets, and no mention of methodology on how to approach disability issues such as accessibility, educational facilities, development partners contribution, etc.

The next strategy of the process will be marked by a high-level meeting with members of the Education and Youth Committees in Parliament, where the recommendations from the roundtable meeting would be presented, discussed and commitments solicited from policy makers.

It is expected that with such approach, EFA-SL Coalition would ensure that education service delivery is more effective through an enhanced system with a predictable and accountable leadership among CSOs and NGOs who will ensure coherence, discipline, timeliness, effectiveness and predictable support to deliver on the government’s stated goals of free and quality education for every Sierra Leonean.