WELCOME REMARKS SPEECH READ BY ZANEC BOARD SECRETARY MR. HAMILTON MAMBO DURING THE MEDIA SENSITISATION ENGAGEMENT MEETING ON OUT OF SCHOOL CHILDREN HELD AT GOLDEN ZAMBEZI LODGE IN LUSAKA, ON 18TH JULY 2019

WELCOME REMARKS SPEECH READ BY ZANEC BOARD SECRETARY MR. HAMILTON MAMBO DURING THE MEDIA SENSITISATION ENGAGEMENT MEETING ON OUT OF SCHOOL CHILDREN HELD AT GOLDEN ZAMBEZI LODGE IN LUSAKA, ON 18TH JULY 2019

Members of the Press

Members of ZANEC Board of Governors

ZANEC Member Organisations

Civil Society Organisations

All Protocols observed

 

It is my singular honour and privilege to present this speech to you our distinguished guests.  I welcome you all to this meeting. For those of you who may not be aware Zambia National Education Coalition (ZANEC) is a Coalition of non-state actors working in the Education and Skills Sector. It is a recognized institution advocating for improved access to quality education by all citizens. The organisation is involved in research, advocacy and member capacity enhancement on different aspects of Education and Skills System in Zambia.  The organisation works in the five Education and Skills Subsectors namely Early Childhood Care, Development and Education (ECCDE), Basic Education (Primary and Secondary School), Skills and Tertiary Education, Youth, Adult Literacy and Education (YALE) and Gender Equality.

It is important to recognize the financial support from the Open Society Initiative for Southern Africa (OSISA) which has made it possible to have this meeting. As an organisation we are grateful to OSISA for the continued support of activities and initiatives related to reducing the number of Out of School Children among others.

Ladies and Gentlemen

ZANEC values the role the media plays in our society and thus our convening this meeting. The meeting seeks to stimulate debate and dialogue around policy and public on key issues affecting Out of School Children and access to quality education services.

The number of Out of School Children is alarming and worrying.  According to United Nations International Children’s Emergency Fund 504,000 (UNICEF, 2014) while 800,000 was recorded in the Educational Statistical Bulletin of 2016 children of school going age are out of school in Zambia.  Out of School Children include:

  • Children who do not have access to a school – Children of school going age who are not enrolled in school due to various barriers.
  • Children who have dropped out of the education system – These are children who were enrolled in school but have left school due various reasons.
  • Children who have access to school but are not enrolled for various reasons.

There are various sited reasons for children being out of school. Some of these are: early marriages, teenage pregnancies, unsupportive learning environment, cost of education provision, lack of appreciation for the value of education, negative cultural practices, being over age, health conditions, lack of assistive devices for learners with Special Education Needs. As you can all see these are complex issues that need every body’s intervention is we are to uproot this vice. As ZANEC, we believe that the crusade to reduce high numbers of OOSC in Zambia cannot and should not be left to Government alone.  We need to work together to eliminate the barriers to education and ensure all children have access ti quality education, in line with our 7NDP theme of leaving no one behind.

Key to this is our continued call to financing a fee-free basic and secondary education as well as vocational skills development for all school-age children  from early age (4 –18 years) and thereby positioning the country towards attaining Vision 2030.

 

Ladies and Gentlemen

As ZANEC we are of the firm belief that the media is a key partner in development as they disseminate information to the public and decision makers. Therefore, media can play an important role in contributing to reduce the number of out of school children by being proactive in creating awareness on the importance of education to the public. Additionally, the media is a key advocate in ensuring that the government and decision makers make favorable policies as well as increasing financing to the Education and Skills Sector.

 

Ladies and Gentlemen

ZANEC conducted a Comparative Study on the Operations and Governance of Parents and Teachers Associations (PTAs) in Zambia: A case study of selected schools in Southern, Lusaka and Central Provinces of Zambia. This was also in the bid to provide evidence to lobby for the reduction of the number of out of school children. The study shows that because of the inadequate funding to the Education and Skills Sector coupled with the late disbursement of funds to most schools, the country lacks essential teaching and learning materials.  As a result of this, some PTAs and Parents Community Schools Committees (PCSCs) have resorted to resource mobilisation mechanisms that end up charging uneconomical levies in order to meet school operational costs. The consequences of  this increased resource burden on parents  and  guardians is that in  most times it increases the number of Out of School Children (OOSC) consequently leading to high illiteracy levels in the country.

Therefore, the overall purpose of this study was to show that PTAs and PCSCs have a broader role to play than being mere fundraising committees for the schools but must also be able to provide checks and balances for quality provision of education services. The study has provided information on the operations and governance of PTAs in practice in comparison to their mandate stipulated in various policies and legislation. As a Coalition we will therefore take this opportunity to share with you the key findings of the study in this engagement meeting. As we are hopeful that it will reach a lot of people in the country through you the media.

 

Ladies and Gentlemen

I urge you all to participate fully in the deliberations of this meeting and share and disseminate widely the information and knowledge you will get from this workshop.

I thank you all and God bless

 

 

If you enjoyed this article, Get email updates (It’s Free)

Find Us on Social Media

Add comment


Twitter
ZANEC_Official on Twitter
77 people follow ZANEC_Official
Twitter Pic SCMZimba Twitter Pic Pachikor Twitter Pic Monakali Twitter Pic globaled Twitter Pic OfInmate Twitter Pic TescaTec Twitter Pic Nyashad1 Twitter Pic NetworkE
Contact Us :

Name:

Email: