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Flashback: Mat South needs 114 new schools

by Alice Dube
24 May 2017 at 06:57hrs | Views
In August last year, Matabeleland South, the provincial education director Mrs Tumisang Thabela said the province requires 114 new schools.

She said 20 would be primary, 75 satellite and 13 secondary schools as quoted by state-controlled Herald.

However, on Monday Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Primary and Secondary Education, Dr Sylvia Utete-Masango stoked controversy when she said 40 schools in the province should be shut down claiming that they are not viable.

Bulawayo24.com has dug up the Herald story which indicated an acute shortage of schools in the province.

Mat South needs 114 new schools (August 11, 2016)

Thupeyo Muleya : Beitbridge Bureau

Government and key development partners should mobilise more resources for the construction of 114 new schools in Matabeleland South, the provincial education director Mrs Tumisang Thabela, has said. She made the remarks during the commissioning of a $30 000-two-classroom block at Zhopembe Primary School which was built by the Zimbabwe National Army here.

Civil works were funded by the community and the Ministry of Primary and Secondary Education through the School Improvement Grant Programme. ZNA provided the work force which built the two-classroom block and an office.

"As you are all aware, we have a shortage of 2 000 more schools in the country, and as a province, we have a deficit of 114 schools.

"These include 20 primary, 75 satellite and 13 secondary schools.

"It is important for Government and other development players to pool resources together so that we may reduce the shortage of schools,"she said.

She said satellite schools were set for construction in new resettlement areas. Mrs Thabela said they had a challenge with the issue of school drop-outs in the province, especially at secondary level, where children had to walk for distances of between 5km and 10km to the nearest school.

She said secondary school education had become less attractive to pupils due to the long distances between feeder primary and secondary schools in most remote areas of the province.

Mrs Thabela said most of the drop-outs were those of communities living along the borders with Botswana and South Africa.

"We also want to urge the parents and guardians to complement our quest for a better education by sending their children to school until they mature into professionals," she said.

She commended the army for constructing the classroom block, which she said would go a long away in complementing the Government's efforts to provide quality and affordable education.

"It is important that we engage in such partnerships, which are a critical component for the development of our country," Mrs Thabela said.

The army's chief of staff responsible for operations and training Major General Trust Mugoba said they would continue to support Government in accelerating key infrastructural development projects across the country.

He said Beitbridge had the least army initiated projects, hence they had undertaken to adopt more infrastructure development-related projects.

He added that, the identified projects should be completed by the end of this year under the military assistance to ministries or communities.





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