DOREEN NAWA, Lusaka
EACH week of the 13 weeks in a term, the fifth and sixth graders at Lwabwe Primary School in Kasama gather under a tree to learn.
The pupils miss out on the quality of education that they ought to receive because they do not concentrate.
A lack of resources like teaching and learning mainly lack of infrastructure is hampering the quality of education for pupils in this area.
“It has become a trend now. When you going in to grade five and six, you even know that you have to say goodbye to the classroom environment and for two years, you will be learning under a tree,” says Grace Chileshe, a 13-year-old grade five pupil at Lwabwe Primary School.
The underlying truth is that the knock on effect of children performing poorly is catastrophic.
James Lombe, a grade six pupil, says children in the surrounding area end up getting demotivated to continue with school and others repeat or drop out of school before completing their primary school years.
“We get laughed at for having classes under a tree by our friends in villages. They openly tell us to just stay home rather than learn under a tree,” James says.
Another complaint made by the pupils is that there are not enough books and pencils for their usage.
“We had a consolation because we used to get free exercise books some time back, but from the time that stopped, many pupils have stopped coming for class,” James says.
Lwabwe acting head teacher Gladys Mweemba says despite Government’s continued commitment to educating children and reach out to the most disadvantaged, a lot needs to be done to meet the global goals on quality education.
“An education must prepare our children to be productive citizens of our country so that we can lift ourselves out of the vicious cycle of poverty and have a better future,” Ms Mweenda says.