Coltart seeks more funds

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Education, Sports Arts and Culture Minister David Coltart, says he is lobbying government to allocate at least 22 % of the national budget to his ministry because it carried far greater challenges than most other ministries.

Coltart said in an interview that the education sector which was this year allocated 12,8 % should be given more priority.

Education, he said, was one of the most vulnerable ministries and was the most affected during the strike by civil servants.

“In the first 11 months of the coalition government my ministry was given just US$10 million in stark contrast to the US$28 million spent on foreign trips by government officials,” said the education minister.

Coltart said the country recently recorded a disturbing decline of about 100 000 in the number of pupils who sat for Ordinary examinations last year.

The Zimbabwe Schools Examinations Council (Zimsec) says only 137 500 pupils sat for last year’s ‘O’ Level examinations compared to 237 388 in 2008.

The Basic Education Assistance Module (Beam) programme to help children who were failing to pay school fees, but the assistance is apparently not enough to cover all the country’s needy children.

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