Illegal to offer extra lessons for a fee: Govt

Primary and Secondary Education Minister Professor Paul Mavima

Primary and Secondary Education Minister Professor Paul Mavima

Abigail Mawonde Herald Correspondent—
GOVERNMENT has once again warned teachers that it is illegal to offer extra lessons to pupils for a fee. In an interview on the sidelines of a tour of Glen View 2 Primary School in Harare yesterday, Primary and Secondary Education Minister Professor Paul Mavima said extra lessons were creating problems in the civil service.

“The Zimbabwean civil service has to be rationalised. There has to be equality within it. The issue of extra lessons had two problems. The first one was to unequalise the civil service. Imagine if you went to social welfare and you were asked to pay extra for receiving the service that the social welfare officer is supposed to grant you. Would that be okay?

“Extra lessons also had a problem where one cannot have rational civil service with extra lessons. What if teachers then do not teach during the normal time waiting for parents to pay something in order to receive a service that you were supposed to receive from Government anyway?

‘’So the issue of extra lessons had serious problems. It would affect the motivation of the teacher to teach during normal working hours and it disequalised the civil service,” he said. Minister Mavima said Government will not allow teachers to be paid for extra lessons. “So we are not going back to a situation where teachers are paid for extra lessons. But we are not saying no to extra lessons per se. What we are saying no to is the payment.

‘’Motivated teachers will request to have space created for them so that they can better teach their students and achieve effectiveness. So it is not necessarily the extra lessons but the payment of extra lessons that removed all rationality in the whole process,” he said. Minister Mavima said his Ministry was going ahead with the implementation of the new education curriculum.

“We are going to continue with implementation of the new curriculum. In fact this school (Glen View 2) exemplifies this new curriculum – in terms of teaching self-reliance, in terms of teaching heritage, we have seen what is here in terms of the cultural village, ICTs (Information Communication Technologies) among others,” he said.

“So, we are going ahead but let me add a quick cover to say we have gone through one year of implementation of that new curriculum, obviously there are teething problems to it and it is now time for us to review and see how implementation has gone and we will definitely work on some areas.”

Added Minister Mavima: “There have been recommendations already especially around issues of tasks, issues of scheduling, issues of making sure that the syllabi that are being offered are age appropriate. So we are going to look at those issues but those are implementation issues. They do not impact on the overall objective of the curriculum and so we will be going ahead with implementation of its overall objective.

“Remember we are saying we want critical thinking, problem solving, we want more of the STEAM – Science, Technology, Arts and Mathematics. We cannot go back on that. To go back on that is actually to take us back to the 20th century. We are in the 21st century and our curriculum here in Zimbabwe has to live up to the demands of the 21st century.”

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  • Jabu

    Nxinxinxinxi atotanga. Why do start by attacking teachers? Instead of focusing on the challenges faced by teachers you want to make them more miserable. You are shooting yourself in the foot. You can not attack and disrepect your foot soldiers like that. You have no turn around strategy. You are going against Restore Legacy where teachers are seen as very important and descently renumerated people in the society and who deserve respect from every corner. You imply that all teachers offer extra lessons which is not true. Even in strong economies extra lessons are given for a fee. Sa- Us- Uk- China- Russia you name it. If I were you l would say it is not encouraged to give extra lessons to the kids you teach not to give a blanket and irresponsible statement. We don’t need people like you who have the old mentality of suppressing others like Dokora.

    • dhehwa72

      He is point on. No to payment for extra lessons. When we went to school , we would receive free extra lessons even during school holidays . Nowadays teachers are not teaching properly during normal times because of the extra lessons payment culture. Those children who fail to pay for extra lessons are victimised by the so called teachers and are also made to fail in internal exams as a way of forcing them to enroll for the extra lessons the following terms. Teachers these days are a very cruel bunch of gangsters.

      • Chazunguza

        On point – Victimisation of innocent souls…

      • Doug SA

        very stupid comment

        • dhehwa72

          Very stupid in what way

      • yowe

        Its not that simple…Its sad when the Editors of Herald continue to try and push propaganda and force a way of thinking on people. Hapana zvine musoro zvataurwa apa

    • MkanyaGP

      I agree with him. Some of us only heard of extra lessons many years after we left school. There was no such, and we still did well. Very well. These extra lessons are only to serve the interests of the teacher, not the child.

  • Tambai Chinemavende

    Oh my, oh my! It seems you are failing to apply a very basic and age old educational approach…look, listen and learn! Eish, just the thought that the responsibility of overseeing the country’s educational foundation has been entrusted on charlatans, makes me afraid, very afraid! Cde are you speaking as a parent, an over zealous policy maker (like your predecessor) or just as a plain and ignorant minister who is clueless of what is really happening on the ground? Didnt you learn anything from bungling Dokora? Remember, if you are unable to learn anything from history then you are doomed to repeat it. Minister your ignorance is epic and baffling. You seriously can’t equate the provision of social welfare to that of education. In Zimbabwe, as anywhere else in the world, no one pays to access social welfare. However, to access education, one has to pay something, call it whatever you like: school fees, building fund, PTA/SGB fund, registration fee, book/desk fee etc. one has to pay something! Its more than just getting into a queue and receiving a handout! Yah, for someone who is arguing for moving with the times, your display of complete ignorance of the needs of our learners (and teachers) especially in crowded, underfunded, poorly resourced and decaying public schools like Glen View 2 Primary School is mind boggling! Why don’t you go back and check for the reasons why extra lessons are being offered and at a fee? Its very disingenuous for you to suggest that it is greed or a sinister plot to destabilise the civil service! Stop harping on such cheap shots and focus on real issues within our decaying education systems like over crowding, poor salaries, lack of resources. Uri kuda kufadza aniko? Parents? ED? Remember, these (unreasonable and vexatious statements) and more, is what made Luzaro so unpopular within the same constituencies he was trying to please!

    • Observer

      Ya, but the point is why are teachers directing students into side-lessons which they induce extra payment for? This is corruption by any name. We need to continue the work of cleaning up the education system as started by Dokora. Government cannot fold its hands and allow some schools to fleece parents through fees for dubious entrance tests, questionable capital projects, inflated invoices for school trips, some teachers busy selling sweets and other trinkets to kids in class, as well as outrageous fees in the so-called private schools. These are serious issues. We need to restore professional sanity.

  • Doug SA

    Is this a media declaration that extra lessons are illegal or is there an actual law that is backing this man up? Thats why african countries are doomed, because of leaders like this…..who is he to decree what at teacher does or does not do in their own time after official school time? Stupid!

    • Freedom Fighter

      You are a stupid greed idiot. You sound like a teacher, a very greed one for that matter. If you are tired of your job just leave it. If it is not paying well leave it for better paying jobs. We do not want greed people in this country. Retire to your farm if you have one.

  • George

    I think this approach is wrong. A parent may decide their child needs extra lessons outside normal teaching hours or even on holiday. Should the teacher then give a free service? I think governm should find ways to assess normal teaching during normal working hours. If it meets the required standard then the teacher is doing a good job. Any other arrangements for extra lessons between 2 or 3 adults, a teacher and parents should not invite government interference. Some children require more than a usual dose of teaching, that’s why not all of them will achieve first class position. The teacher’s obligation is to meet a certain standard in the classroom, period. That’s my contribution.

    • John

      This I agree to. A parent may realize that their child require extra lessons. A parent should be able to request a professional teacher to assist their child. That assistance naturally should be paid for – nothing wrong with that. That arrangement should be very private – even done at a teachers home. ..and definitely not at the school premises. Any extra lessons at a school – should not be paid for. A teacher could easily take advantage of the situation and not teach properly in order to force for extra lessons
      . This I agree with the minister.

  • pp

    This guy should leave this like “illegal” for the courts to pronounce! If I have the money and a willing teacher to help my child then where does the minister come in? Is it your money Cde Minister? You sound more like Jonathan Moyo!

  • Odza

    You and your new curriculum are somehow lost. You have started implementating a programme that you did not put proper infrastructure to make it operational. Take for instance pupils in rural areas where there is no electricity, mobile network and all the makes an enabling environment. Of course you can put your hands in your pocket and pause as you have done something so good but it’s as good as you are putting on a nice denim trousers without putting on underwear. First things first. Let’s not talk much about 21st century when our infrastructure is of the 19thC. The parents you are busy putting pressure on to provide those items needed to implement your thing do not even have one gadget in their homes and are unemployed. Please review your ways of running the country.

  • Zvavanhu

    I respect all your opinions here. But if my understanding of the problems mentioned above is anything to go by then the Hon Minister is spot on. Teachers are paid to teach during normal working hours period. In any case, the new curriculum seeks to promote other disciplines that are not academic hence to subject our children to 10 hours of teaching is torture on its own.

    If they cant grasp in four or five hours, let them try swimming hey!!!!!

  • Investor

    Ndazviziva kuti pachapopotwa pano hahaha

  • Tamuka

    What a lazy professor, just following Dokora’s insane ideas. Where is your creativity. Bring your own ideas which are feasible and practical in Zimbabwe.

  • tqwertg

    He at times misfire he @ one time advocated for cancellation of teachers certificates when they have misconduct issues He hates his subordinates he will not ask for their pay rise or any issues related to to the improvement of conditions of service

  • Zapalala

    Kkkk bundling zanoids at it again. Pure results of cheap labour and cadre deployment. Don’t we have experienced educators who can lead this ministry properly. How do u restore legacy when u fuck the very fundamentals of a sustainable economy . Education is key and must be led by a technocrat not a political bafoon with populist policies that will get us no where.

  • michael nyabasa

    In my view, paying for extra lessons is an added burden to the economically struggling parents. I also think, the justifications pointed out by the Honorable Minister, above, are valid to our current economic situation. In addition, I propose for a closely monitored performance evaluation of the teaching staff.

  • yowe

    Very difficult to judge…I had problems in a particular subject during my Grade 7 the teacher i had could not give me the adequate assistance during the term.She was teaching 4 subjects to a class of 50 students FYI. Fortunately my parents could afford for me to go for extra lessons during the holiday where it was only 10 students and i got adequate help
    ..But what about the other students whose parents could not afford? So what if Fay Chung the education Minister then banned lessons what would have happened to me??.
    The issue here about banning extra lessons is wrong( why would anyone work extra for no pay ? Mavima the Minister himself got an allowance to give that speech) rather focus on providing schools with a better student to teacher ratio and paying teachers more. Iyi hameno inoda kufungwa and not short term solutions like this YOWE!!!!

    • stanley

      We work to earn money.If the money is not enough then it is good for any reasonable and educated person to use his or her own initiative which is legal

      on the face of it . I think we must address the root of the problem not to weigh heavily on the victims of a situation who are trying to adapt by possible means legal prima facie.This is my opinion, and to others is food for thought.

  • dhehwa72

    There is a difference between paying for a private tutor to assist your child and extra lessons provided by the same teacher to the same students at the same school using the same teaching materials. What is the teacher in such a scenario teach that he/she failed to do during normal teaching hours