Headteachers commend the JICA’s program for improving pupils’ mathematics performance. 

By Jesse Ampah Owusu 

Accra, Mar. 06, GNA – The heads of Kyebi Ebenezer Presbyterian Primary School and Apedwa Newtown M/A Primary School commended the Japan International Cooperation Agency’s (JICA) COMPASS Programme for helping their students perform better in mathematics. 

This was made known during a media tour of the schools to observe the progress of the COMPASS project. 

JICA established the Project for Improving Learning Outcomes through Community Participation for Sustainable School for All (COMPASS) in 2020 to improve numeracy learning outcomes in primary schools. 

The four-year project, running from March 2020 to March 2024, benefited 1,868 primary schools across 60 districts in the Eastern, Volta, and Oti regions. 

The Ghana Education Service (GES) runs the project with technical assistance from JICA, in collaboration with the National Council for Curriculum and Assessment, the National Teaching Council, and the National Schools Inspectorate Authority. 

Madam Irene Odonkor, Head Teacher of Kyebi Presbyterian Primary School, said her pupils’ numeracy skills improved over the four years of the project. 

She said they had a set time in the morning to practice the project’s numeracy learning materials four times per week and gave some of the lessons to the pupils as assignments. 

Madam Odonkor said those routines sparked her pupil’s interest in numeracy and resulted in improved scores during examinations, particularly the National Standardised Test for Primary Two and Four pupils. 

The Headteacher urged parents to fully commit to their children’s education, adding, “They had critical roles to play to ensure their kids took their studies seriously after school and during vacations.” 

Madam Charity Ohene Brako, Headteacher of Apedwa Newtown M/A Primary School, also confirmed an improvement in the performance of her pupils. 

She, however, indicated that the mathematics workbook for practice was insufficient for her pupils and that they needed to use exercise books for practice. 

Stephen Ekpe, a Class Six pupil at Apedwa Newtown School, explained that before the initiative, he was not doing well in mathematics; however, after enrolling in the lesson periods in the workbook, he was catching up. 

He said the workbook made Mathematics more practical and easier because it guided students through basic additions, subtractions, divisions, and fractions.  
Elizabeth Serwaa, a Class Five student, said Mathematics had never been a subject she liked; but with continued practice, she was gradually becoming interested in the subject. 

Mr Bright Dey, COMPASS Project Operations Team Lead, said that they had recorded such success stories in each one of the other primary schools participating in the programme. 

He said that based on reports from field supervisors, they had achieved an 80 per cent success rate in the project.