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Wednesday, May 22, 2024

Government commits to improving teachers’ welfare

Story by Tamuka Charakupa

GOVERNMENT has reaffirmed its commitment towards improving teachers’ welfare.

This came out at the World Teachers Day belated commemorations held in Chipinge this Saturday.

The country continues to cherish the invaluable contribution of teachers in national development, with the belated World Teachers Day commemorations being held in their honour at Rimbi High School in Chipinge this Saturday.

The day saw learners extending their gratitude to teachers while teacher representatives took the opportunity to lobby the government to continuously review their welfare.

“We appreciate the role that our teachers play. they are our unsung heroes who spend their time with us.

“We celebrate our teachers today because without them there is no future for us. They are patient with us even when we face challenges, in return for their dedication we implore fellow learners to respect our teachers, “ said learners at the event.

National Chair, Mr Amon Chiwocha said, “Our loudest cry to the Ministry is to improve teacher training, skills, recruitment and retention, provide non-monetary benefits and create a supportive working environment, continuously support both the teacher and the learner as they embark in implementing viable commercial programmes in schools.

“We strongly believe teacher shortages in certain areas and subjects can easily be overcome if all teachers go through the ideological orientation we are currently offering with our partners. This will enhance patriotism and teachers will love to work from any place in Zimbabwe with affirm recognition that Zimbabwe is a unitary state.”

“We say, teacher shortages nationally and globally impact negatively on the gains so far realised in education impacting on both our national vision, NDS1 and Millenium Development Goals. Understaffed school often leads to perpetual conflicts in schools, large classes, limited pupil attention and reduced instructional time among other vices and this impacts negatively in provision of quality, holistic, accessible and inclusive education,” said the Provincial Executive Officer, Zimbabwe Teachers Union, Mr Kudakwashe Mbaura.

The government appreciated the commitment of teachers to national development and is ready to address the challenges they are facing.

“Today we celebrate our teachers because they empower our children with knowledge and above all teach them our societal values of Ubuntu/Hunhu. We applaud their role because they are the ones who spend most of the time with children, said Mutema-Musikavanhu Constituency’ Legislator, Honourable Angeline Gata.

“We are aware of the shortages of schools in our province. We are happy that our government is calling for partnership and private investments in the education sector. We are ready to avail land to such investment because this will increase the number of schools and this will also increase teacher employment,” Manicaland Minister of State for Provincial Affairs and Devolution, Honourable Advocate Misheck Mugadza reiterated.”

Guest of honour, the Minister of Primary and Secondary Education, Honourable Torerayi Moyo highlighted initiatives being undertaken by the government towards addressing the welfare of teachers which include the Teacher Capacity Development Programme.

“The Government has taken many initiatives to develop teachers’ professional skills with quality and this year Cabinet approved the principles of the Teaching Professional Council Bill.

“The Teaching Profession Council of Zimbabwe’s objectives are to professionalise the teaching service enhance the public standing of teachers, and improve, and maintain high-quality professional standards for teachers. It is aimed at providing an independent, representative, and self-regulated board to champion issues around the teaching profession, strengthen professionalism in the education sector and promote the Zimbabwean Hunhu/Ubuntu and holistic education.

“We are aware of the challenges that teachers are facing in this haemorrhaging economy. I would like to implore our teachers to soldier on as we explore ways to relieve them from these welfare challenges by way of continuing to implore the PSC to improve general conditions for service,” he said.

Meanwhile, the government has confirmed plans to employ five thousand teachers next year as part of efforts to create employment and reduce the teacher-pupil ratio in schools.

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