Archive for the ‘Junub Sudan’ Category


RVI – Juba University Lectures 2014 – Announcement – 13 October 2014 (1)


By Morris Mabior Awikjokdit

The start of a school year brings with it a crop of anxious parents hoping their child has an excellent teacher. And recently, policymakers have wondered whether the playing field is level when it comes to getting that excellent teacher. Education managers must ensure that “family income and race still too often predict how likely a child is to attend a school staffed by great educators.” Beginning in April next year 2015, states will need to submit plans to the National Ministry of Education to ensure that “poor and minority children are not taught at higher rates than other children by inexperienced, unqualified, or out-of-field teachers.

On the surface, this is a reasonable response to the issue of inequity in access to quality teachers. But how large of a problem is teacher inequity really? Looking at recent analysis and research on teacher equity suggests two conclusions. If equity is defined as access to teachers with particular characteristics such as experience, the problem seems large. But if equity is defined as access to effective teachers, those that contribute more to test score growth, the problem does not seem large. This is not to say issues of teacher equity should be ignored, but that proposed solutions should be proportional to the problem.

One proxy for effectiveness is experience, as the ministry of Education’s statement notes. What kinds of students are taught by inexperienced teachers? Minority enrollment is not as accurate a predictor of achievement as disadvantage, however. With Ellie Klein’s assistance, I looked at the relationship between teacher experience and disadvantage from the 2011 Schools and Staffing Survey, a nationally representative survey of teachers conducted by the National Center for Annual Education Statistics. These data show that a bit more than 50 percent of inexperienced teachers (those with less than four years of experience) are teaching in high-poverty schools. In contrast, 19 percent of inexperienced teachers are teaching in affluent schools.

That’s a big difference. An inexperienced teacher is nearly three times more likely to be in a high-poverty school than in an affluent school. And the inequity appears to be getting more pronounced. In 2007, according to the same AEC and EMIS data source, about a third of inexperienced teachers were teaching in high-poverty schools and about a third were teaching in affluent schools.

But an even better proxy for teacher quality is effectiveness, a teacher’s ability to move students ahead on tests. Assigning disadvantaged students to weak experienced teachers rather than to strong inexperienced teachers does not tackle the underlying equity issue.

To get a sense of the magnitude of teacher inequity viewed through the lens of effectiveness, we need to measure effectiveness in some way. Suppose we measure it as “value-added,” using a statistical model to attribute to teachers an amount of test-score growth shown by their students during the year. If two teachers had similar students at the start of a school year, the one whose students have higher test scores in the spring will have higher value-added. There is lots of debate about these models, but they are appealing as a uniform approach for measuring the vague concept of teacher quality. (As an aside, calls to reduce the frequency of testing, such as here and there. Not having annual testing means student growth can no longer be measured, which means forgoing efforts to assess effects of policies to spur student growth.)

The Institute of Education Sciences funded three studies of the teacher-quality issue, using value-added models and measures of student and school poverty. The studies included thousands of teachers and tens of thousands of students in a wide range of states and counties. Because value-added measures rely on annual test scores, the studies report results for teachers from fourth to eighth grades, the grades for which annual tests are required. Results from two studies are discussed here and the third study had consistent findings.

In the poorest primary schools, 19 percent of teachers were high performers. Equity would mean 20 percent of teachers would be high-performers regardless of a school’s poverty level. So, there is evidence of some inequity, though it is not overwhelming.

Gaps were larger in middle schools. In the most affluent middle schools, 32 percent of English and language arts teachers were high performers. In the poorest 20 percent of middle schools, 12 percent of English and language arts teachers were high performers (the differences were smaller in math). These gaps varied widely between county with some county having larger gaps and others having none at all.

Another study focused on the match between disadvantaged students (not schools) and effective teachers. It showed that the “effectiveness gap” is small. The overall score gap between disadvantaged and advantaged students was 28 percentile points in reading. That’s a big gap. The study showed that distributing students equitably among teachers would reduce this gap to 26 percentile points (in math, the study estimated that a 26 percentile-point gap would be reduced to 24 points). A closer look found that differences were larger in some districts and near zero in others.

Using this evidence, an ideal policy guaranteeing students equitable access to effective teachers could reduce a small amount of the achievement gap (about seven percent of it, the 2-point reduction divided by the 28-point base).The actual effect would likely be smaller. The effect also relates only to narrowing the gap. It’s hard to predict what will happen to overall achievement. It could go up or down.

The author is a freelance is opinion writer and a professional experience teacher based in Warrap state- Kuajok. He can be reached by email: morrisawikjok@yahoo.com


By Choul. C Puoch

This may not be the first time South Sudanese gets surprised by the political behavior of Michael Makuey Lueth in South Sudan. His political manifesto is associated with legal speaking style (but purely lying) and as well as military commanding strategy which he added into his lifestyle during the struggle. I think it’s difficult for Makuey to ever adjust his political behavior that would make him charming and inspiring rather than aggressive and divisive propagandist.

To me, Michael Makuey has lost his status as “Honorable Minister” and has become a “Horror-able Minister”. That is how I can address him. If Makuey Lueth can behave like an angry Lioness at ordinary civilians and the media, how then has he been behaving in peace talk on those he really calls enemy? Someone at the peace talk could accurately tell us about this.

I have come to learn that there is a behavior derived from the politics of Sudan with the Arab and being practiced unknowingly at this time of history in our Country: The Mistrust. It was very difficult to truth an Arab man and even his words, no matter how sweet and friendly they sound. Our unique belief was that, the Arabs are not our people and we shouldn’t be with them. That very belief had even increased the portion of mistrust behavior to a total and permanent mistrust on the Arab of the North Sudan and had let us finally to our independence, something we should proud of as an outcome of our struggle.

However, the negative outcome of that behavior is the fact that it has not been washed away in the heart and attitude of our people and especially, the politicians. Well, you may not cross a muddy environment and expect your feet to be clean after crossing; you have to wash them first after crossing and from there, you will see their cleanliness and free from mud. If you don’t wash and only continue your journey ahead, it’s obvious that the mud will only dry off on your feet and you will carry it to your final destination. To say the least, you are dirty and people will definitely see you as such. That is what exactly happening to some of us, especially those in politics and governance.

Most of our politicians in The Republic of South Sudan didn’t wash their feet after crossing the muddy environment which took us some 49 years to cross – they are still carrying with them the mistrust behavior on anyone. You can imagine that the mud was too much, and too long to walk through and it was not only on the feet, but I think it went to neck and head.

One of the most affected fellows by this scenario is Horror-able Michael Makuey Lueth. It’s only in Salva Kirr’s regime to appoint such an anti-civilians person to the most civil engagement ministry, the ministry of information and communication. It was not even by career because Makuey is a Law graduate who has nothing to do with information and communication.

Unverified information has leaked out that Makuey doesn’t pray. The time he prayed the other day was all about asking God to kill for him Taban Deng Gai. A member of his family has revealed as they were chatting in their hotel in Nairobi recently. I believed this information and have rated it with absolute reality base on my observation on Makuey Lueth.

Michael believes that he can and will defeat the SPLM/A-IO in the shortest time possible. He thinks that those in the opposition are his permanent enemy, they can never be one again and he can never and would never trust any of them in times to come. His wish remains to be the idea of defeating the SPLM-IO and not to negotiate with them and find a peaceful solution to address their differences and bring the lost peace back to the people of South Sudan.

You would believe all those aforementioned once you closely monitor the behavior of Makuey Lueth during the peace talk: When people are likely heading toward peace direction, Makuey adopt the behavior of stupidity and confusion as it’s not his dream and interest. When people are stuck during the peace process, Makuey adopt the behavior of aggression, total mistrust on those involves in the peace talks and pursue his bloody divisive propaganda. He sees the moment of constrain in peace process as his opportunity to pursue his dream of defeating the SPLM-IO and not thinking of finding ways and means to bringing peace and stability back to the people of South Sudan.

The recent statements he made in a press conference in Nairobi after the adjournment of peace talks by IGAD mediators is a simple prove to my observation. Honestly, sometime he speaks statements which I don’t understand!

That behavior of Michael Makuey can absolutely be called “uncivilized politics”. It’s in contradiction to the modern politics of inspiring people. Michael Makuey believes that they (Him and his rooks) are ruling and forcefully controlling us. But something must be clarified to Michael; we, the South Sudanese, and more specifically the Dinka and the Nuer, can never be ruled or forcefully controlled. We didn’t succumb to a kingdom formation as we value every man to be the same to other men. We couldn’t manage to live under a kingdom that time and we will never live under it forever. We will never live our life under oppressor, aggressor etc. We would militarily, politically, socially and diplomatically fight you to your end, and not our end. Think about this in the social and political aspect of it, please.

The SPLM/A –IO has already been established. Its ideologies have been introduced; they are there and will forever be there. If you don’t like federalism, it has already been introduced, accepted and will forever be there. If you don’t like those politicians in the SPLM-IO, please quite the politics of South Sudan and do not make it tasteless. If you choose to be an anti-civilian person, please quite the politics as well and go home.

This fighting, to be honest, is by South Sudanese, for South Sudanese and with South Sudanese. It will and can be stop anytime soon but people of your kind will still be pursued by the spirit of dead South Sudanese and will appear at night to them as ghosts and you will feel the pain at last. You better understand this or otherwise, you have the mandate to bring peace to South Sudanese and should negotiate in good faith before things are out of hands. You must cease speaking divisive propaganda toward the ordinary civilians; try and adjust your political behavior and pursue the politics of inspiration because you are not a puppet of Salva Kirr; are you? You are a politician still with potential of saving not only greater Bor as an MP but also as any other public office including the presidency. Are you not capable Horror-able Makuey?

Chuol C. Puoch is a South Sudanese living in South Sudan; (But currently in Kampala in time of writing this piece) he can be added/follow on Facebook with his name mentioned above, on twitter @ChuolChot and via email: chuolchotson@gmail.com . You can also access and follow his words onwww.chuolchotson.wordpress.com


Originally posted on Dr. Christopher Zambakari's Blog:

Dr. Christopher Zambakari,
Rotary Centre for International Studies in Peace and Conflict Resolution
School of Political Science & International Studies
The University of Queensland
Australia

In this short piece, I want to reflect on a subject rarely covered inside the academy: the pursuit of one’s purpose. I will argue that if you can see your dream, with work and discipline, you can make it possible. Our world is better because there are people who dared to dream. If you see it, truly see your dream, what you see depending on its strength will compel you to do certain things today—that over time—conspire to make the invisible (dream) visible, the impossible possible.

The ability for fulfilling a purpose and a dream is dependent, or is a function of the power of the dream itself. While there are many dreams, only few of those are powerful enough to compel you to pursue…

View original 389 more words

What is Minister Michael Makuei Lueth up to?

Posted: October 2, 2014 by PaanLuel Wël in Junub Sudan

By Lam Akol

Minister Michael Makuei Lueth, the Spokesman of the Government of South Sudan, shocked his listeners on the BBC Focus on Africa Programme on Tuesday the 30th of September 2014, by his aggressive statements about the mediation of the current IGAD led Peace Talks taking place in Ethiopia.

He said the following:

  1. The Chairman of the mediation, Ambassador Seyoum Mesfin, is biased;
  2. Ethiopia is not neutral ground;
  3. The Troika countries (USA, UK and Norway) are directing the talks through the Ethiopian mediator;
  4. The Troika countries plus the European Union are responsible for the current conflict because they wanted to see regime change in Juba;
  5. The IGAD heads of state and government did not ask the Troika from the beginning what price they were to pay in return for the money Troika was paying for the mediation;
  6. For the above, the peace talks must be relocated from Ethiopia to Nairobi;
  7. That his information is first hand as he is privy to inner knowledge of what is going on.

While he left all of us gasping, we have the right to ask: is this another of Makuei’s characteristic loose tongue or is it Government’s official policy?

Peace is a serious matter indeed, and therefore we will reserve our comment until we hear from the Government whether indeed this is its policy.


By Michelle Nichols

UNITED NATIONS Sat Sep 27, 2014

(Reuters) – South Sudan’s President Salva Kiir raised concerns on Saturday about U.N. peacekeepers focusing on protecting civilians amid renewed violence – as instructed by the U.N. Security Council – instead of state-building in the world’s newest nation.

Fighting erupted in South Sudan in December after months of tension sparked by Kiir’s decision to fire rival and former Vice President Riek Machar. Deep ethnic divisions have also fueled the violence, pitting Kiir’s Dinka people against Machar’s Nuer.

“My government would like to raise its concern regarding the recent mandate of UNMISS (the U.N. mission) which has serious implications in service delivery to my people,” Kiir told the 193-member United Nations General Assembly.

He complained that the U.N. mission was no longer helping the authorities of South Sudan, which declared independence from Sudan in 2011, with capacity building, peace-building, security sector reforms, recovery and development.

The U.N. Security Council authorized peacekeepers in May to give priority to the protection of civilians in decisions about the use of available capacity and resources within the mission. The council doubled the number of peacekeepers in late December to 12,500 troops when fighting broke out.

Kiir asked the 15-member Security Council to reconsider the changes it made to the U.N. peacekeeping mission when it renews the mission at the end of November.

But U.N. peacekeeping chief Herve Ladsous said “now is not the time to think about building state institutions,” which he said often had ties to human rights violations.

“It has been abundantly clear since this crisis started that we could not continue with the original mandate of state building. We have to concentrate on alleviating the main consequences of the drama, that is to protect the civilians,” he told reporters on Saturday after Kiir’s speech.

“We have to monitor human rights abuses and act upon them because there has been massive violations by all sides, including the government,” Ladsous said.

At least 10,000 people have been killed and more than 1.1 million displaced, with tens of thousands of civilians seeking shelter and protection at United Nations peacekeeping bases. The United Nations and aid agencies have accused both sides of ethnic-based massacres and grave human rights violations.

“UNMISS needs to protect civilians in their neighborhoods and not in camps in a huge country like ours, which is bigger than the size of France,” said Kiir, adding that his government had launched an investigation of rights abuses.

Kiir blamed Machar for the violence, which he described as a failed coup because Machar was “too impatient in his thirst for power,” and stated that the conflict was “purely a political struggle for power – not an ethnic conflict as reported.”

With his country on the brink of famine, Kiir failed to attend a high-level meeting on the humanitarian crisis on Thursday – organized by U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon – at which pledges of help were made.

Kiir said on Saturday that South Sudan “deeply appreciated and welcomed” the aid meeting.

The United States, frustrated with slow progress in South Sudan’s peace process, said on Thursday it was ready to expand sanctions against political and military figures unless warring parties end the violence quickly.

The U.N. Security Council has long been threatening sanctions against the warring parties, but has yet to act.

(Additional reporting by Louis Charbonneau; Editing by Dan Grebler)


Please click on the links below for the latest updates from the Small Arms Survey’s Human Security Baseline Assessment (HSBA) for Sudan and South Sudan:

The Conflict in Unity State (2 October 2014)
Describing developments from May through late September 2014, including the SPLA’s recapture of Bentiu and its ongoing efforts to prevent it from further assault from the SPLA-IO. While the SPLA also holds Pariang and Abiemnom counties, the rest of the Nuer south remains in the hands of the SPLA-IO. Rubkhona, Guit, and Mayom counties are contested. In Mayom, rebel commanders and former SSLA fighters struggle for control of their home county.
http://www.smallarmssurveysudan.org/facts-figures/south-sudan/conflict-of-2013-14/the-conflict-in-unity.html

Conflict Map – Unity State (2 October 2014)
Showing locations of major clashes since May 2014 and areas of control as of October 2014.
http://www.smallarmssurveysudan.org/fileadmin/docs/facts-figures/tables-maps/HSBA-FF-SSud-Control-Clashes-Unity.pdf

For more HSBA Facts & Figures, visit: smallarmssurveysudan.org/facts-figures-latest-updates.php

For questions, comments on content, or feedback, contact:

Yodit Lemma
HSBA for Sudan and South Sudan
Small Arms Survey
yodit.lemma@smallarmssurvey.org

Follow the HSBA on Twitter (@Sudan HSBA) and Facebook (Sudan HSBA – Small Arms Survey)