THERE is a need for a renewal of interest in raising the standards of education in Zimbabwe once more, the secretary general of The Rural Libraries and Resources Development Programme (RLRDP), recently told educators in Bubi District.
Speaking as a guest of honour at the 2008 Better School Programme Provincial Merit Awards Ceremony at Inyathi High School last week, Mr Obadiah Moyo, said there was a need for educators to work towards the goals and aspirations of the Ministry of Education, Sports, Arts and Culture.
“It is pertinent to unpack this theme that is pregnant with meaning. In this context it is renewed interest in our educational performance and desired standard by the level of quality. The ministry of Education Sports Arts and culture exists to provide this high quality of education and the theme of this function is in tandem with the goals and aspirations of the ministry,” he said.
The awards are held annually and the theme for this year was Reviving Our Education Performance and Standards for Quality Education.
All school representatives from Matabeleland North converged at Bubi district to participate in the Better School Programme Provincial Merit Awards were accolades for a number of disciplines were awarded.
The awards were awarded to schools and individuals who came out tops in various disciplines ranging from academics, arts and sports
Mr Moyo said the awards are the right step in the right direction in improving academic performance and shows that Matabeleland North is interested in the development of the child.
“The strategy of holding a Provincial Merit Awards function is a step in the right direction towards improving academic performance. Schools and pupils that performed badly should come up with practical turn around strategies for better performance. This goes to prove that the province is interested in the holistic development of the child,” he said
Mr Moyo highlighted a number of points in the education sector which needed refining and said the interest of the children in learning was negatively affected in the previous years as there was a low number of candidates who turned up to write examinations.
“Parents need to work together with teachers to motivate the children to have a keen interest in learning. Children need an assurance that the teachers are still dedicated and committed to their welfare and learning,” he said.
He highlighted that the grade seven registrations in the province needed revision because there are some students who do not register for the examinations yet registration is free.
“Although the examination is free, we have cases of pupils who do not register for the examinations. We need to come up with strategies to ensure all pupils are registered,” said Mr Moyo.
He also said that aid must be given to Ordinary level students so that they also sit for their examinations.
“At O`level we also need to improve and work towards 100percent of candidates for examinations. School administrators together with stake holders should come up with strategies to assist the less privileged,” he said.
The secretary general said the province demands stakeholders to unite and prioritise the education system and the causes of the collapse should be identified and nipped in the bud.
“The situation also demands that all the education stakeholders come together and work to put the system, in the province, back on track. The root causes of the near collapse in the system need to be identified and nipped in the bud, once of and for all,” he said.
Mr Moyo said School Developments Committees (SDC) are, among a number of things, formed to secure school property seeing that ever since last year, schools were turned into kraals and that led to major infrastructural damage.
“Schools in 2008 were turned into kraals for the animals of the same parents whose children attended at that school. That had a very negative impact on the children who associated the school infrastructure with the presence of teachers only. In the absence of the teachers, school buildings, furniture and stationery were insignificant objects for destruction. SDCs are constituted to secure the school property,” he said.