7,000 secondary teachers for transfer to primary level

OVER 7,000 excess teachers for arts subjects in public secondary schools will be transferred to primary schools to curb shortage at the low level of education, it was announced here yesterday.

Deputy Permanent Secretary, Presidents Office, Regional Administration and Local Government, Education, Bernard Makali told the Parliamentary Public Accounts Committee (PAC) that the move will also help to improve the quality of primary education in the country.

Mr Makali said currently there is a shortage of 47,151 primary school teachers while there is a surplus of 7,463 teachers at secondary education level. He noted that the government has embarked on a pilot programme in Arusha Region and upon its completion it will replicate it in other regions across the country.

The PS detailed majority teachers who go for further studies pursue arts subjects, leading to shortage of teachers in other subjects, especially science and mathematics.

About 99 per cent of primary school teachers who upgrade their skills, have been studying arts subjects... we have been encouraging them to remain in their respective schools to improve the quality of education, Mr Makali said.

He said teachers will be transferred to schools within their respective councils and will continue receiving same salaries. Mr Makali, however, said that the government also plans to employ 4,129 teachers for science and mathematics as well as 400 laboratory technicians.

He said that the distribution of teachers will base on streams against the previous system that based on students ratio. The Ministry of Education, Science, Technology and Vocational Training, said the deputy PS, had verified all the academic certificates of teachers who have applied for the posts and the new recruits will be directly assigned to their workstations.

Commenting on the Controller and Auditor General (CAG) report on the Ministry of Education, Kilindi Member of Parliament Omar Kigua said there were several teachers who upgraded their academic qualifications but were not promoted.

Some teachers secured loans to finance their education up to masters level and they continue teaching in primary schools... why are they not being promoted, Kigua queried. Sikonge MP Joseph Kakunda (CCM) said the CAG report had indicated that there were teachers without qualifications who have been employed in various schools in the country.

Responding, the deputy PS said that there were some teachers who upgraded their skills in different fields and could not be promoted in the teaching career.

According to the ministrys statistics, there are 88,999 teachers for public secondary schools, including 18,545 for science and mathematics as well as 70,454 for arts, languages and commercial studies.

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