The government of Zimbabwe has scrapped Second Term school fees, while in the process of recruiting at least 6 000 teachers ahead of the phased reopening of schools starting tomorrow.

Among other programmes set to be introduced are purportedly, introduction of crash programmes and the suspension of sporting activities in order to ensure learners complete their syllabuses and graduate to the next grades.

The classes are going to be trimmed to facilitate health guidelines to fight Covid-19. Hence, the need to recruit more teachers. The classes which are normally too big are going to be standardised to less than each, while learners seated a meter apart.

Other strategies to be employed include; introduction of weekend classes and crash programmes, teachers to emphasise and concentrate on the key concepts, gradual catching up and revisiting those areas that might need to.

Though schools are opening tomorrow, only ZIMSEC exam classes are being counted; grade 7 and form 4 & 6. In the phased process Grade 6, Form 3 and Lower Six will resume studies on October 26, and on November 9, ECD A and B, Grades 1 to 5 and Forms 1 and 2 will return to school.

Again, the exam as other classes write their internal exams in December and close waiting to open in January 2021, the exam classes will remain to complete their exams. This implies that there will be no holiday for the teachers in December.

Schools will close in December for everyone except for the Zimsec examination classes that will have papers that overlap to next year,” he said the Primary and Secondary Education Minister Ambassador Cain Mathema.

Schools were warned not to charge school fees for the second term.

The official school calendar was Term One. So, there was no Term Two in the first place, and the Government position is that no school must therefore demand fees for a term that was not announced and approved by Government,” said Matema.

It is also claimed that the Provincial Education Directors (PEDs) submitted updates and progress reports to the ministry on preparations to reopen schools. The reports helped Government to procure and deliver personal protective equipment (PPE). This was followed by a recent extensive tour by the Ministry of Primary and Secondary Education and parliamentarians.

The National Pharmaceutical Company of Zimbabwe (NatPharm) is expected to finalise on the distribution of PPE to schools across the country.

NatPharm has been tasked to supply PPE to schools and we have given them a timeframe that they should have delivered by Sunday (today) to ensure that every student gets PPE by the end of next week (this week),” said Matema.

He also added that, the Government and its partners, which include churches, Plan International and UNICEF, would continue delivering PPE to schools throughout the term.

National Association of Primary Heads (NAPH) chairperson Mrs Cynthia Khumalo confirmed that schools had begun receiving PPEs.

Educationist Dr Cephas Nziramasanga expressed his concern over the practicality of Government’s crash programme.

From my point of view, I do not think it is attainable for a teacher to complete a seven-month syllabus in two months. I suggest that in January teachers restructure the syllabus in a way that will cover work for the previous grade and present one.

This will require a lot of work from both the teachers and students. This will ensure some form of continuity.

He also added that teachers will require to take up continuous assessments and introduce practical lessons in all subjects to ensure the child’s record is kept, while ensuring that the child is grasping all the concepts.

By March, they will have finished work from the previous grade and continue with the present one.

Credit: Sunday Mail

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