Rural Teachers slam new curriculum

Mlondolozi Ndlovu

Zimbabwean government’s decision to enforce the new education curriculum has been slammed by the country’s rural teachers as a program that was implemented without consultation and that necessary measures were not put in place to ensure its success.

The ministry of Primary and Secondary education has beginning this term introduced a new curriculum that the Ministry claims will empower learners to be self-sustainable after school and not rely on theoretical type of education.

In a statement released on Tuesday, Amalgated Rural Teachers Union, (ARTUZ) President Obert Masaraura revealed that they had conducted a survey which revealed that teachers were not adequate prepared for this new education program.

“Teachers in the sampled schools revealed that they had not schemed because they do not have syllabi for the new curriculum. A teacher at one of the schools in Midlands said a workshop on the new format on scheming is on the line up for form three and one teachers.

“There is lack of preparedness for teachers to implement new learning program. Schools are also understaffed as new subjects have been introduced but a number of teachers remain unchanged,” said Masaraure.

The teachers’ union also came up with shocking statistics in its recent survey showing that most of the schools in the country’s remote areas were not ready to implement the curriculum due to a number of challenges chief among them incapacitation of the educators.

“A snap survey conducted by Amalgated Rural Teachers Union, (ARTUZ), revealed that 98% of sampled schools in rural areas were not ready and will not be ready to implement the new curriculum for the next week in better circumstances and forever in worst scenarios,” read part of the statement.

Students interviewed for the association’s research were ignorant to what was expected of them in the new learners regime.

“Learners interviewed revealed that they were unconscious of expectations of new curriculum. In secondary schools form 3 pupils are affected the most. The entry behaviour of learners in form 3 does not empower them to tackle new learning such as computers and sciences subjects.

This reporter also spoke to a Matebeland rural teacher who preferred anonymity, but revealed that the curriculum would only proper up the rich saying poor rural students would be further disadvantaged.

“The new curriculum excludes the very fact of social strata in our society. I am talking about the ability to acquire resources and accessibility of those resources for implementation. The elite remain ahead of the poor masses. It is a curriculum seeking to expound the dominance of the well up.

“If it’s so much a curriculum that is feasible and ideal my appeal is to have all ministers brining their kith and kin from the diaspora to learn it. Dokora is the main culprit, why have they favoured the European way of education, I look at Mathematics as it is my area of speciality what criteria has been used to eliminate some topics from o level to ZJC,” said the Maths educator.

Speaking in a separate interview Zimbabwe National Students Union Secretary General Makomborero Haruzivishe also laid into the new education program saying the Ministry of education was supposed to train teachers in preparation for the new education program.

“They cannot bring a new curriculum just because it’s a new year without first training teachers considering the upgrading of our educational systems and putting into place mechanisms to ensure a smooth transition from the old curriculum to the curriculum.

“This hurried move to impose a new curriculum by the ministry is nothing but an egoistic Minister Dokora, who is bringing the new curriculum of claiming to have done something during his tenure. He should first ensure systems to ensure that in 2017 we will not have 4500 pregnant girls again, before embarking on this high sounding nothing initiative,” said Haruzivishe.

Efforts to get a comment from the minister of education were fruitless.

 

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