Government has castigated teachers in the country for producing poor results despite being paid better than their counterparts in private schools.
And Livingstone District Education Board Secretary Zeneliah Choola says 95 girls from 26 schools fell pregnant last year and 41 were re-admitted into school.
Education Minister Dr John Phiri says mission schools, private and community schools were always performed better than government schools.
Dr. Phiri said this was mainly due to the poor working culture of teachers in government schools.
“I am tired of always announcing results that indicate missionary schools, private and community schools perform better than government schools which always come out last,” he said.
ZANIS reports that the minister said this in Livingstone yesterday when he addressed lecturers and teachers at David Livingstone College of Education (DALICE).
He has challenged teachers in the Tourist capital to execute their duties professionally and not use challenges they faced as excuses to compromise teaching standards.
Dr Phiri said he was aware of the numerous challenges teachers faced and knew many of them had no accommodation and slept in classrooms, but assured them government was addressing the challenges.
He also implored teachers to grow their profession by improving their academic qualifications if they expected to remain relevant in their profession.
“I am pleading with you to grow professionally, by improving on your academic qualifications if you expect to remain relevant in your profession as you have the mandate to change other people’s children,” he said.
He said it was disheartening that training colleges graduated people who were unwilling to serve and could not inspire their pupils.
“We graduate people who are unwilling to serve effectively in the teaching service and cannot even inspire our boys and girls.
“ We graduate teachers who do not understand their role in teaching mainly due to limited employment and training opportunities,” he said.
He urged training colleges to track their graduates and ensure they delivered quality education while in the field, and to recall those found wanting in a bid to protect the profession.
The Education Minister is on tour of Southern Province to assess how Ministry of Education personnel are implementing government policies to enhance the standards of education in the country and has so far, toured 11 districts.
Earlier, Livingstone District Education Board Secretary Zeneliah Choola says 95 girls from 26 schools fell pregnant last year and 41 were re-admitted into school.
Mrs. Choola noted that most girls who got pregnant came from outside Livingstone in pursuit of secondary education and were renting houses in the city.
“However, some interventions have put in place and a safe house supported by World Vision and FAWEZA has been established and is currently accommodating 13 girls,” she said.
Furthermore, she said the demand for tertiary education in the district was high and this resulted in the opening of backyard pre-school colleges.
And DALICE Principal Daniel Simpasa acknowledged government’s commitment to develop the education system and the country as a whole.
Mr. Simpasa pledged his institution’s commitment to implement Ministry of Education guidelines and government policies for the education sector.