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Teachers told to bond with their pupils

Mangochi District Education Manager (Dem), Sam Kalanda, has called on teachers in the district to create conducive environment for learning by being friendly to pupils in order to improve the education standards in the district.

Kalanda also urged Civil Society Organisations (CSOs) working in the education sector in the district to avoid imposing projects but rather to seek guidance from local people as well as officials who are working on ground before initiating any project.

He was speaking on Saturday when he presided over the closing of a week-long female teachers’ role model meeting which was organised by Forum for Women Educationalists in Malawi (Fawema) under the Keeping Girls in School project which is being funded by UKAid through Save the Children.

The Dem said the presence of more CSOs working in the district was an indication that the district was still facing serious challenges in ensuring that many children are attaining basic education. He said that only 13 percent of girls complete primary school in the district.

“You should be worried that you are teaching in a district where education standards are pathetic. This, however, should be your motivation to work hard to change the status quo,” Kalanda said.

He continued to complain of a tendency by some CSOs who just come into the district and initiate projects without consulting people on the ground, saying this approach has not helped to improve education standards.

“Most NGOs [Non- Governmental Organisations] just come with their projects without consulting local people. This affects the success of the projects because most of the projects we have do not respond to the district’s educational needs. It is important that we start demanding concept papers from NGOs before they start operating in the district,” said Kalanda.

Fawema Board Member, who is also Southern Region Chairperson, Dora Chilenje, urged female teachers to further their education in order to inspire girls to work hard in school.

“Most importantly be friendly to female students so that they can confide their problems in you. You also need to network with parents in order to identify challenges which pupils face when they are at home as well as at school,”Chilenje said

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