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Between 1995-06 and 2005-06, more than 85,000 children between the ages of 8 and 14 years participated in a complementary education programme in rural areas of northern Ghana. School for Life, a non-profit organisation, provides nine months of instruction in the children’s spoken language. An impact assessment of the programme demonstrates that complementary education programmes are able to help children attain basic literacy in their mother tongue within a shorter timeframe and more cost-effectively than formal state primary-school systems can.

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