The Sunday News
Thupeyo Muleya, Beitbridge Bureau
THE construction of more schools is critical in the achievement of an envisaged upper middle-class economy by the year 2030 and hence churches and development agencies should partner with Government in providing accessible and quality education in the country.
This was said by the acting Beitbridge District Schools Inspector Mr Molao Sitoboli during the official handover of Majini Primary School to the Evangelical Lutheran Church in Zimbabwe (ELCZ) by the Beitbridge Rural District Council on Friday.
The school was built by missionaries in the pre-independence era and was taken over by the Rhodesian government which ran it through the local authority. Its handover follows engagements between the ELCZ and the Government.
“The provision of quality education within the country cannot be a role for the Government alone. We need to work together with the church and other organisations in pooling resources. Education is one of the key enablers of Vision 2030 and hence we all need to make sure that we build more schools and enrol in a class all children of school-going age. It is also our hope that the handing over of this school to a new Responsible Authority (RA) will make it grow even bigger.”
Beitbridge District has a total of 71 official primary and 18 secondary schools. Beitbridge Rural District Council chief executive officer Mr Peter Moyo said they had agreed to phase the handover of all the schools built by missionaries.
He said the move would relieve resource constraints the council is facing in managing the learning facilities. Mr Moyo said it was important to have more hands mobilising resources to improve the state of education in the district.
ELCZ’s Western Diocese leader Bishop Michael Dube said they are repossessing 10 schools in Beitbridge and Gwanda districts respectively under Phase 1.
“We are looking forward to complementing the Government in providing quality education and at the same time we want children to grow up with ubuntu and are respectful. We will mobilise more resources to make the learning environment child-friendly by building more infrastructure that is sustainable, and we are introducing chaplains to guide the pupils on religious matters.
“At the same time, we are going to have a lot of supervision in these schools and we also introduce more income-generation projects to help boost the facilities’ operational costs.”
Majini Primary School Development Committee vice-chairperson Mrs Dzulani Sibanda said the move to hand over the school to the church would help them in resource mobilisation.
Headman Siyoka of Majini area, Mr Liberty Muleya said it was critical for the staff at the school and the new authorities to embrace a new way of doing business.
He said it was important for the community, the church, and the staff to move with one vision towards the provision of quality education. – @tupeyo