About 14,370 out-of-school children, comprising 7437 boys and 6931 girls from four districts, have begun classes under the Reaching and Teaching out-of-School Children project (REACH) to facilitate their enrolment into the formal school system.

Plan International Ghana, a non-governmental organisation, has partnered with the Ghana Education Service, to implement the REACH project, with sponsorship from Educate a Child.

The beneficiary districts are Chereponi, Tatali/Sangule and Bunkpurugu/Yunyoo, and Savelugu/Nanton Municipality (S/NM).

The REACH project, which is modelled on the Complementary Basic Education (CBE) programme, seeks to give out-of-school children beyond the school starting age (eight to 14) an opportunity to acquire basic literacy and numeracy skills in their mother-tongues to enable them to enrol in the formal school system.

The mother tongues being used under the REACH project include Dagbanli, Nchan, Likpakpaaln, Anufo, Moar and Mampruli.

Mr Stephen Konde, the Regional Coordinator of Plan International Ghana, visited some of the REACH class centres at Limanfong and Janjori/Kukuo in the S/NM to witness the first day of the classes.

He said 569 community facilitators had been trained on the CBE methodology to facilitate the project to ensure success.

Mr Konde said the classes would run for nine months (October to June), after which the pupils would be in a position to enrol in the formal school system, entering between primary three and primary six, depending on their abilities.

He said work was ongoing to transition about 70 per cent of the 9,139 children forming the first batch of the project beneficiaries into the formal school system.

REACH is a five-year project, which began in October, 2015.