Government will spend over K1.5 trillion to upgrade 1,570 Community Schools infrastructure that requires immediate upgrading in the country.
Education Minister John Phiri says government has identified community schools that require immediate upgrading in order for them to offer quality education to Zambian children most of who come from extremely poor families.
In an interview with ZANIS, Dr. Phiri said out of the over 3,000 community schools in the country, 1,570 require urgent attention from government although almost all community schools are set for upgrading in the near future.
The Minister however noted that some community schools have good infrastructure and are performing well due to the support from the co-operating partners.
He disclosed that about K940 million will be spent on each school to build a 1×3 classroom block, 3 teacher’s houses, 2 double VIP toilets and a borehole to supply water for drinking for pupils.
The Minister however commended the community for their initiative to come up with community schools within the proximity of their children, a move he promised to improve upon by upgrading them to fully fledged primary and secondary schools.
He noted that the community have good ideas but have no capacity to build proper structure and provide qualified teachers hence the government intention to work with them in the upgrading of community schools.
He said the upgrading of community schools will not negatively affect untrained volunteer teachers as there was a programme in store for them to be upgraded together with the schools.
He assured the community that government will ensure that the education sector is levelled to allow both the rich and the poor equal access to education.
Dr. Phiri has also revealed that the Patriotic Front will plant more secondary schools in rural areas to cover the gap between the rural and urban community in accessing education.
The PF government’s intention to takeover and upgrade community schools raised concern among stakeholders on the fate of the untrained volunteer teachers have been offering their services for a long time.