ActionAid Tanzania in collaboration with its partners TENMET,MEDO and KINGONET has recently launched a report with research findings on situation of education in public primary schools in Singida and Kilwa Districts.
The Launching event which was done at both National and District level aimed at sharing the research findings with wider education stakeholders for their reflection and setting wayfoward on how to address them.
All the dissemination events brought together education stakeholders at national and district level, pupils, parents, community members, school management committees, representatives of NGOS/CBOS, academicians, local government leaders as well as the media.
The research report is part of the Promoting Quality Education through Progressive Domestic Resource Mobilization project being implemented by AATZ and partners in countries of Malawi, Mozambique, Ethiopia, Mymar, Nepal and Tanzania.
Speaking at the National launch on behalf of other implementing partners TENMET coordinator Ms Cathleen Sekwao said the report is titled as Citizen Education Report due to the fact that citizen themselves were the ones involved in data collection, analysis and validation in collaboration with the consultant.
She also urged participants to reflects together on how availability of quality education for public schools especially for a girl child can be financed because "Tax loss leads to poor education for children especially a girl child.
In presentation of the findings , Mr Jacob Kateri(researcher) explained that the study used Promoting Rights in Schools(PRS) approach and out of ten rights in the PRS, only six rights were used.These includes Right to Free and Compulsory Education, Right to Adequate infrastructure, Right to Quality trained teachers, Right to Safe and Non-violent environment, Right to participate, Right to transparent and accountable school.
According to the report, more girls than boys had been enrolled in 60 schools that were surveyed i.e 51% Kilwa, 52% Singida while Children with disabilities who were enrolled in Kilwa were 5 out of 15 and 8 out of 15 in Singida.
The findings also show that the School dropout rate is 3.7 % of children in 2015 with 3.5% in Kilwa and 3.9% in Singida, the majority being boys. Reasons attributed the drop out for girls included domestic chores , long distance from home to schools and lack of sufficient hygiene and sanitation facilities at schools while for boys reasons were poverty, (lack of fund to buy school items),parents engaging children in petty business as well as poor attitude towards education .
On the the number of pupils per qualified teachers,the study established an average of 59 pupils per qualified teacher, a ratio that varies from 1:96 to as low as 1:23 against a benchmark of 1:40. In Singida the ratio is 1:60, with only 2 out of 15 schools that has number within ratio of 1:40 while in Kilwa the ratio is 1:53 with only 3 out of 15 schools within ratio of 1:40.
In the` recommendations,among others the study suggested that the goverment should commit to spend 20% of the national budget on education from 2018/19 onwards.
During discussion of the findings stakeholders requested goverment to adress the challenges as per the research recommendations using domestic resources.
"If tax and other revenues will be collected properly they could be enough for developing social services especially education’’. Advised one participant from Singida
Other recommendations suggested by participants included legalising the capitation grant,establishment of teachers professional board,strengthening education inspection department,inclusion of child rights in the teaching curriculum, more capacity building and creating linkage between school management comitees and village leaders for smooth functioning.
The research was conducted in Kilwa and singida districts during the period of May to June 2016 and out of 60 project schools 15 schools for each district participated in the study.