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Education activist warns on double cohorts intake

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AN education rights activist has warned that having double cohorts of first year students at Chancellor College (Chanco), a constituent college of the University of Malawi, will have repercussions on education standards.

Chanco management announced the arrangement on Wednesday that students who were selected in 2016 and 2017 will start classes together.

Chanco is scheduled to open on Monday. The arrangement means one cohort shall be attending classes in the morning and the other one in the afternoon. But in an interview yesterday, education rights activist, Benedict Kondowe, argued that the situation might compromise education standards as lecturers will be overstretched.

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“It is a situation that needs to be managed very well. Information on the ground already says that one cohort will be doing classes in the morning and the other in the afternoon. That poses a huge risk to lecturers because they will be overstretched by the amount of work that they are supposed to carry out,” he said.

Kondowe further challenged authorities to manage the situation with diligence. “My plea to the college management would be that they should devise a mechanism to ensure that standards are not compromised,” he said.

The arrangement has come about following the prolonged closure of the college due to a labour dispute. Students who were selected for the 2017 academic year will undergo orientation from July 10 while the rest will resume classes from July 17 to 21 and August 7, this year.

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