Teachers’ unions say the move by the Government to ban holiday extra lessons will negatively affect the overall Zimbabwe Schools Examination Council (ZIMSEC) pass rate.
Ministry of Primary and Secondary Education spokesperson Taungana Ndoro on Tuesday told NewsDay that the government had banned holiday extra lessons to curb the spread of the coronavirus.
However, Progressive Teachers Union of Zimbabwe (PTUZ) president Takavafira Zhou said extra lessons are not compulsory but are for the benefit of learners. Said Zhou:
Over the years, students have been performing very well in their exams owing to holiday lessons.
The blanket ban is unfortunate because extra lessons are not mandatory.
The ban is likely to have negative impacts on the overall ZIMSEC pass rate.
Teachers take pride in students passing and they offer holiday lessons for free.
Zimbabwe Teachers Union of Zimbabwe secretary-general Goodwill Taderera said despite the ban, teachers will continue offering extra lessons to willing pupils. He said:
Parents willingly send their children for extra lessons where they find teachers of repute to help them in their areas of need.
While the government has banned extra lessons, teachers will still clandestinely hold the extra lessons because they are being underpaid.
The issue of extra lessons only reflects the extent to which the teaching profession is under siege.
Previously, schools would conduct holiday lessons usually for two weeks, allowing learners who would have fallen behind to catch up and also to cover areas of the syllabus that may have been left out during the term.