THE government is reportedly investigating the low pass rate in last year’s examinations with a view to punish non-performing school heads and teachers.
Simon Khaya Moyo, the Senior Minister in the President’s Office, was quoted saying the government would not sit and watch the education sector going down the drain.
He said results particularly in Matabeleland South were shocking as a number of schools had recorded 0% pass rates.
We would have had no problems endorsing such an investigation if the poor results were something new.
As we have noted before, the rot in public schools became apparent at the height of the economic collapse that was halted by the formation of the inclusive government.
Teachers had abandoned their jobs en-masse because the Zanu PF government had stopped trying to show that it cared about their welfare.
A perusal of the archives shows that as early as 2004 the pass rate had gone down to as low as less than 15%.
To put it mildly, successive Zanu PF governments presided over the collapse of the education sector.
Despite strides made in the sector since independence, Matabeleland and Midlands provinces especially, did not benefit from the government thrust to make education available to all because of the armed conflict at the time.
The government has neglected to build schools in most of these areas and children in most cases learn under very extreme conditions hence the poor pass rate.
On Monday, we carried a story of Mahole Primary School in Matabeleland South where pupils use an old beer garden as a classroom because of lack of proper facilities.
The situation that the Mahole community finds itself in is no different from most remote areas of Matabeleland where children have failed in their numbers.
Therefore, it is very worrying that the government as Moyo has revealed has no clue as to what causes the poor performance in schools.
This can only tell us that government officials are sleeping on duty and have no idea how to go about their work. We have an inept government to say the least.