The Parliamentary Portfolio Committee on Education, Sport, Arts and Culture has recommended the teacher to pupil ratio at schools be reduced as it emerged that teachers were overwhelmed by the number of students they had to handle in one classroom.
This came up in a report of the committee chaired by Zanu PF MP, Dorothy Mangami on the challenges in the education sector in Zimbabwe.
The report noted that government had failed to maintain the one teacher to 40 pupils ratio as most teachers, especially in the rural areas, had to handle very huge classes.
The committee was informed that the teacher-student ratio has reached unacceptable levels and that most rural teachers are being forced to attend a class with an average of sixty pupils, which is unrealistic as the teacher cannot monitor all the students, reads the committee report.
Subsequently, this leads to poor performance of both the teacher and the student and in addition most school heads are full time class teachers who are responsible for planning, recording, teaching, evaluation and monitoring, supervision, and at the same time executing administrative duties, it read.
The report by the committee also noted that a decade of economic meltdown had caused school infrastructure to deteriorate in value.
Rural schools face high transfer of teachers to well and better equipped schools in terms of infrastructure.
Most of the rural schools have inadequate classrooms and poor structures for sporting, cultural and arts services. Teachers houses in rural areas are inhabitable, the committee said in the report.