HONE SIAME, Lusaka
THE World Bank has approved an International Development Association (IDA) credit of US$60 million to improve Zambia’s general education system with a focus on teaching and learning quality in mathematics and science.
World Bank country manager for Zambia Ina-Marlene Ruthenberg said in a statement yesterday that 1.2 million primary and secondary school pupils are expected to benefit from the programme.
Ms Ruthenberg said the Zambia Education Enhancement Project (ZEEP) will provide teacher training, textbooks and learning materials in targeted primary and secondary schools.
She said the financial injection into Zambia’s education system demonstrates the World Bank’s commitment to increasing equitable access to secondary education, especially in rural areas.
“We are delighted to support Zambia’s efforts to reduce poverty and promote inclusive growth by ensuring children are in school and learning.
“All Zambian children deserve a quality education that equips them with the knowledge and skills they need to lead healthy, productive and fulfilling lives,” she said.
Ms Ruthenberg said the robust educational programme will include support to adolescent girls in rural areas to access and complete their secondary education.
“An additional 4,700 teachers and administrators will benefit from training and facility expansion.
“The programme also includes a capacity-building component to strengthen the Ministry of General Education’s planning, management and monitoring & evaluation capability,” she said.
And World Bank senior education specialist and project lead Xiaonan Cao said the programme will strengthen teacher training by establishing feedback loops to identify areas where students show difficulties, while ensuring teachers have the necessary content knowledge and pedagogical skills to address those gaps.
The World Bank’s IDA, which was established in 1960, helps the world’s poorest countries by providing grant concessionary loans for projects and programmes that boost economic growth, reduce poverty, and improve poor people’s lives.