Mzingwane High teachers protest

MZINGWANE High School teachers in Esigodini have allegedly embarked on a go-slow protesting against the government’s move to ban extra lessons and incentives.

MTHANDAZO NYONI
OWN CORRESPONDENT

Some parents told Southern Eye that they were shocked to discover that their children had not been taught anything since the beginning of the second term when they attended a consultation meeting at the school last Friday.

The parents accused Mzingwane headmaster Moroka Magaya and teachers of taking their children for granted.

“Our children are learning nothing at Mzingwane High School and we are angry as parents because we struggle to get money to pay fees.

“There is no course work and they haven’t written any notes since the beginning of the term,” fumed a parent who only identified herself as MaNdlovu.

“What hurts the most is that some of our children are doing Form 4 and 6.

“What are they going to write in examinations if they are not learning anything?”

Another parent said he was concerned about the future of his children at the school.

“Our children informed us that their teachers said they cannot teach them because the government banned incentives and extra lessons.

“So our children are suffering for something that is not part of the curriculum,” said the parent.

“We pay fees on time in full, but teachers are failing to deliver on their mandate.

“We tried to talk to the headmaster over the issue, but he professed ignorance and we feel he is too young to head that school anyway.

“Teachers spend the day basking in the sun and we were told that some teachers conduct crash programmes during the day where they charge $20 a subject.

“The pass rate at the school has dropped significantly and if nothing is done, Mzingwane will become a basket case,” the parent said.

Another parent said infrastructure at the top Matabeleland South school was deteriorating due to lack of maintenance.

“All hostels and classrooms window panes were repaired in 2012, including the sprucing up of hostels ablutions but to keep them clean all the time has been a sticking issue,” he said.

“Over 1 200 chairs and desks were repaired, but half that number cannot be used now, they are all broken.

“All this boils down to lack of supervision and disregard of school regulations and policies.”

He said parents expected responsible and mature professional teachers to mould their children to become better adults, but that was not happening at the school.

“These children will never be better adults or taste university education at all unless something miraculous happens,” he said.

The parent said the teachers’ errant behaviour was caused by the fact that they enjoyed too many privileges.

“Their children are learning for free and they get free meals at the school dining hall as well,” he said.

“One senior teacher is refusing to pay examination centre fees claiming it is his benefit as a teacher at the school.

Investigations can be made to prove this, particularly, with senior teachers who are running the show and these have overstayed at this school, always being difficult for the headmaster to manage them.

“It’s high time they moved on to work somewhere to face challenges in the world like other teachers in the province.

“They should take a leaf from Matopo High School that is run professionally and it’s an envy to everyone in the province.”

Matabeleland South provincial education director Tumisang Thabela said she had not received any complaint about the school, but promised to send a team to investigate the allegations.

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