International Literacy Association Launched at UEW

The UEW branch of the International Literacy Association (ILA) was launched at the University of Education, Winneba on 6th April, 2017.

In a speech read on behalf of the Vice-Chancellor, the Dean of the School of Graduate Studies, Professor J.O. Ammah, indicated that the Association was created in 1956 to improve reading instruction, facilitate dialogue about research on reading, and encourage the habit of reading. He further stated that the UEW branch of the Association will provide teachers with the necessary resources and professionalism to support and inspire students with literacy skills. He acknowledged the role of UEW in training competent professional teachers for all levels of Education in Ghana and expressed the fact that graduates of UEW are thoroughly equipped with necessary skills to help many people in the country to have access to literacy education. He was hopeful that the Association will create a sustainable literacy community amongst staff and students of the University.

Speaking on the theme “Literacy and Sustainable Development: The Role of International Literacy Association” The University Librarian, Mr. Viscount Buer, espoused the ideas of the Secretary General of the International Council for Adult Education (Ms. Katarina Popovic) and a Brazilian educator and philosopher (Paulo Freire) that “Literacy is an entrance to the world” and “literacy is not about reading the word but about reading the world.” He continued that Literacy is a fundamental human right and the foundation for lifelong learning. He noted that Literacy does not only include the ability to read, write and use numeracy “but also the ability to handle information, to express ideas and opinions, to make decisions and solve problems, as family members, workers, citizens and lifelong learners.”

He added that “effective literacy skills open the doors to more educational and employment opportunities so that people are able to pull themselves out of poverty and chronic underemployment. He further observed that literacy will play an important role in the attainment of sustainable human development, and affects labour force, economy and social well being of the society. He urged participants to understand other forms of literacy besides reading and writing which included computer, library, media, visual, technology and financial literacies. He tasked the participants to assist others to also become fully literate.

Present at the event were the Registrar of UEW, Dr. C.Y. Akwaa-Mensah and a cross-section of staff of the University community.

Also in attendance were pupils from selected schools in the Effutu Municipality.