HomeLocal NewsDiaspora chips in to help Coltart rebuild schools

Diaspora chips in to help Coltart rebuild schools

-

A group of Zimbabweans based in the United States have set up a committee to help mobilise funds and partner with the Ministry of Education, Sport, Arts and Culture in rehabilitating the country’s education system, especially in the area of science subjects.

The group’s spokesperson, Thokozile Mkhwananzi, told NewsDay that their action was prompted by the low standards of science education in the Matabeleland region.

“We are concerned by the lack of students from these regions entering the National University for Science and Technology (Nust) to study science and technology. We would like to help them qualify for admission to any institute of higher learning by providing the needed resources and welcome the idea of the mathematics and science centres. We are prepared to commit resources to this effort,” Mkhwananzi said.

She said the proposed two centres per province is an encouraging start in line with the need for equitable distribution of resources, but given the fact that the Matabeleland and Midlands regions are already lagging behind, there is a need for further resources to be committed in these regions to bring them to par with other regions.

“We have a proposal to secure funding to improve Mathematics and science education in other schools so that they become mathematics and science resource centres in other parts of the region,” she said.

“We would like the Ministry of Education to partner with us by allowing us to have input in identifying schools to be made into resource centres and providing qualified mathematics and science teachers for those schools.”

Several qualified teachers, especially in sciences, left the country for the Diaspora at the height of the economic downturn.

Mkhwananzi said, as a committee, they believed that science and mathematics must be introduced at an early age and strengthened at higher levels.

“All high schools must have well equipped mathematics and science laboratories including computer laboratories. This will enable the students who graduate from the schools to compete on the global marketplace including colleges and universities,” she said.

Mkhwananzi said, as Zimbabweans based in the Diaspora, they had access to a lot of opportunities and felt they could extend some of these to help children back home.

“We have untapped talent in our midst to assist in rebuilding the educational system and we hope the minister realises that there is significant overlap in what he plans for education in Zimbabwe and what we advocate for,” she said.

“Every school should have a fully-equipped, functioning library that provides support for all grades in that school. We are committed to assisting with the gathering of relevant textbooks, pens and pencils.”

Mkhwananzi said it is important that more secondary schools be established in Matabeleland to help students who currently have to walk long distances to school.

“We are also ready to establish secondary schools central to a number of primary schools so that children do not have to walk such long distances to school.

The Google earth-mapping of the existing schools in the country initiated by the Education, Arts, Sports and Culture minister David Coltart is a highly commendable exercise and would illuminate this issue even more,” she said.

Recent Posts

Stories you will enjoy

Recommended reading