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Chipinge heads forced to send pupils home as teachers strike

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Chipinge heads forced to send pupils home as teachers strike

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Fungayi Munyoro-Chingaira

CHIPINGE-Several headmasters were today forced to send pupils back home because there was a low teacher turnout over a strike for salaries to be paid in USD, Chipinge Times is reliably informed.

Pupils also turned up in low numbers at the schools and parents who spoke to Chipinge Times said they were assessing the situation before sending their children to school.

Manicaland Provincial Education Director (PED) Richard Gabaza said he was still assessing the turnout when Chipinge Times called him for a comment.

“We are still assessing the situation. We are still getting information from our districts. Generally, we don’t expect 100 percent attendance of teachers and pupils on the first day. The percentage was favorable although it was not 100 percent from both teachers and learners. We expect it to get better as the week progresses,” said Gabaza.

Several rural school heads who spoke to Chipinge Times on condition of anonymity said they were forced to send pupils back home because teachers did not turn up for work and they could not control the pupils who were roaming around.

“Few teachers came and they did not last long and I had no option but to send pupils back home.

“We hope the situation improves but it is out of our control because the teachers are not showing any interest in coming to work,” said a head who spoke to Chipinge Times.

A survey conducted by Chipinge Times in Chipinge urban showed that almost three quarters of the teachers did not report for duty and pupils spend the day roaming in town.

One parent said they will only send their children to school next week after monitoring the situation.

“My child is at Gaza High School. He came back early since there were no teachers. We will see tomorrow maybe they will come,” said one parent.

“I did not send my child to school today because I heard teachers were on strike. I think my child will go there next week after assessing the situation. If teachers continue striking, I am forced to look for a place at a private school. Last year my child did not perform well because they did not go to school because of Covid-19,” said a parent whose child learns at Gaza O Primary School.https://www.masvingomirror.com

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