What was originally meant to be a center for reading for kids in Point Four and nearby communities has now gained support from Exxon Mobil and the National Oil Company of Liberia (NOCAL) to operate an after school program.
Known as Rosetta Steps Literacy Center, the program will graduate 180 kids within a year, according to Ms. Ama W. Harris, director of the center.
The center celebrates the legacy of Ms. Harris’ mother, Rosetta B. Harris, former principal of Tubman High School. Ama told the Daily Observer that the center is her mother’s legacy to the kids in the community.
“We take the kids in batches of 50 to 55 for the program every three months,” Ms. Harris said, “and after the three months – when we realize that some of the kids need further assistance – we still go ahead and help them.”
The center teaches the kids to learn 25 sight words a day using video, television, flash cards, among other learning aids.
Subjects taught at the center are phonics, English, reading, spelling, math, verbal reasoning, drawing and coloring, hook on phonics, telling stories, physical education and writing the alphabet.
According to Ms. Harris, the center has two professional teachers who graduated from the Licoses Teacher Training College, and eight other staff members.
Out of the 47 students at the center, 20 are on scholarship and 27 are supported by their parents. “We have a system that lets parents settle their fees daily or weekly since they are daily income earners,” added Ms. Harris.
She said that the center allows for 15 students and two teachers per school from four schools in the community, along with 10 kids from the center, to go through its capacity building program, which is held in a three-bedroom building fitted with video and other learning aids, including flash cards and books.
“Our programs are intended to benefit other schools when funds become available,” Ms. Harris said. “The improved learning materials make learning more fun for the kids.”
The administrator, Logan Harris, said the center is attracting a lot of children in the community because “the strength of the center is in math and reading and we provide a learning environment that encourages the kids to concentrate on their learning while teachers show a lot of patience.”
“The excursions are an attractive feature at the center. The director, at her own expense, provides the means for students to experience exciting and memorable events outside the city,” he said.
The current administration includes Mrs. Fatumata Mulbah, principal/teacher; Wisdom Janalard, vice principal/teacher; Urias T. Garpehn, secretary/teacher; and Ms. Johnetta Anderson, teacher. Others are Ms. Princess Zubah, teacher; Ms. Teta Zuu, teacher; Vincent Karpak, teacher; Kpalla Bedell and Ms. Decontee Harris, support staff.