Education, Science, Vocational Training and Early Education Minister, John Phiri has attributed the recent wave of riots in schools across the country to poor administrative skills and lack of pupil governance in the affected schools.
Dr Phiri observed that the unprecedented wave of riots that have rocked the education sector is a clear indictment of failed leadership skills in school administrators that have been entrusted to manage the schools.
Dr Phiri implored school management, Parents Teachers Associations (PTAs) and other stakeholders to explore possibilities of introducing school councils which will give pupils a chance to democratically elect their own prefects as opposed to the current situation where prefects are chosen by school management.
Dr Phiri was speaking at the on-going first ever Eastern Province Education Indaba in Chipata aimed at reorienting education stakeholders on the PF’s manifesto on the education sector.
He, however, warned erring pupils and other students in the habit of rioting as a way of expressing their grievances whenever there were misunderstandings by destroying both private and public property of stern action.
And speaking at the same indaba, Education, Science, Vocational Training and Early Education Permanent Secretary, Miriam Chinyama, called for prudent utilization of government funds if the sector is to make a meaningful contribution to the socio-economic development of the country.
Mrs Chinyama said the Auditor General’s reports for the ministry have revealed widespread financial mismanagement that has impacted negatively on the provision of quality education to Zambians.
She urged Provincial Education Officers (PEOs) to be proactive and ensure that funds that government allocates goe to the intended programmes.
Earlier, outgoing Eastern Province Education Officer, Philila Jere, said her office had formulated a provincial strategic plan for schools in the region aimed at improving academic performance.
Ms Jere said the 2011-2013 strategic plan seeks to address some of the inadequacies that impacted negatively in bettering academic performances in the province.