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Poor Learning Environment: A Story That Must Change

Monday, May 30, 2016 - 09:59

Lihimalyalo Kusini is the Primary school in Kilwa district Southern part of Tanzania with a total of 411 student and six classrooms. The school is among of 30 schools participating in Promoting Quality Education Through Progressive Domestic Resource Mobilisation project with the support from NORAD.

The overall goal of the project is to improve quality education for all children in public primary schools to be able to get skills and knowledge to realise their full potentials in adulthood.

Among of the major challenges facing the school currently is inadequate learning infrastructure which forced pre-primary pupils to have their classes organised under the tree for two years. In early 2016 the head teacher and school management committee discussed and agreed to construct a temporary room made of poles,thatch grass and mud to help protect children during their studies.

Studying under the tree affects effective learning as its very difficult to concentrate because in the event of rainy season they were forced to postpone learning sessions. The head teacher Mr Hussein Chadali explained that, even though they have the temporary structure but still its not a friendly learning environment. “The class is congested, its raining, and dust is affecting children and teachers”.Commented Head teacher Mr Hussein.

Community efforts to improve teaching and learning is constrained by resources as the School Management Committee chairperson Mr Salum Omari emphasized.”We are striving to improve the situation but we are constrained with inadequate funding from the government who is the custodian of all public schools”.

According to the National education statistics, enrolment of children in pre-primary education in Tanzania is only 36.9% (BEST2015) and from experience, poor learning and teaching environment in primary schools in general is a contributing factor to this.

The challenge of poor learning environment faced by Lihimalyalo school is also reflected in many other schools in Tanzania which indicates that the government needs to take bold action to change the situation through increasing funding for education sector.

The new education policy, effective from January 2016, addresses some of the major issues that have been prevalent in the Tanzanian education system including making pre primary education compulsory where a child will now not enter primary level without going through a pre-primary class.

This requires massive resource mobilisation to support the initiative for quality improvement. ctionAid and local stakeholders believe that this will be achieved through addressing financial constrains which resulted from poor domestic resource mobilisation.