The Education Ministry and the US Agency for International Development have proposed a new programme The Early Grade Reading Assessment (EGRA) to promote reading habit in school-age children.

EGRA is designed to understand the best foundation skills to be used in early-grade literacy programmes, said Bridget Okpa, director for policy, planning, management and research at the education ministry.

Instruments for EGRA are being adapted in Igbo and Yoruba.

According to a statement from the ministry, EGRA has been implemented in over 30 countries and 60 languages to enable children get acquainted with the alphabet, read words simply, understand sentences and paragraphs as well as listen with comprehension.

Okpa disclosed that EGRA through the assistance of the Northern Education Initiative and USAID has been administered twice in

Hausa Language in 2011 and 2013 in Bauchi and Sokoto States.

Jill Jupiter-Jones, leader of USAID’s education team, said the agency wanted to make reading more relevant and interesting among school children, adding that the project would soon be extended to four more states in the northern part of the country.