THE Ministry of Education said that learners who are in government boarding schools who are not vulnerable will be required to pay K1,000 boarding fees per term.
In a circular to all provincial education officers, all-district education board secretaries and all headteachers, permanent secretary technical services Joel Kamoko said identified vulnerable learners would have their boarding fees paid for through the Constituency Development Fund (CDF) Secondary School Bursary Scheme.
“The scheme will apply to all learners in government and aided secondary schools who will meet the selection criteria. In this regard, the vulnerable beneficiary learners will be identified at community level in their respective constituencies and possibly at ward level,” he said.
Kamoko said the new dawn government was resolved to implement the education for all policy from early childhood, through primary, up to secondary school levels, starting from January 10, 2022, when institutions of learning open for term one.
“His Excellency the President of the Republic of Zambia, Mr Hakainde Hichilema has been clear and consistent in stating the new dawn government’s commitment to providing increased access to quality and equitable education to all the citizenry,” he said. “This was augmented by the Minister of Finance [Dr Situmbeko Musokotwane] during presentation of the 2022 budget speech on 29th October, 2021 where he announced that user fees will be abolished in all government schools from January, 2022.”
Kamoko said the provision of education for all from early childhood education, through primary up to secondary school would be implemented as all user fees at early childhood education and secondary school levels would be abolished as institutions of learning open for term one in 2022.
“The government will take the responsibility to pay tuition fees through a compensatory grant to all government schools offering early childhood and secondary education. Such a compensatory grant will be equal to the amount schools used to collect through user fees,” he said.
Kamoko said the government would also increase the traditional primary and secondary school grants by two-fold in a bid to uphold high quality education standards.
He said all Parent Teachers’ Association (PTA) fees would be abolished from early childhood education, through primary to secondary.
Kamoko said the schools would be compensated for the loss in revenue from the increased grants allocated, effective the 2022 school calendar and beyond.
He said the government would pay a subsidy for user fees pegged at K600 per pupil in all aided secondary schools.
“Further, the government will constructively engage the education secretaries for all aided schools to agree on an affordable user fee that they will charge per pupil in all aided secondary schools as they apply for their aided status,” he said.
Kamoko said examination fees for grade 12 pupils in all government and aided schools have been abolished.
He said the government would take up the responsibility for examination fees through a grant that would be disbursed directly to the Examinations Council of Zambia.
“However, it should be stated very clearly that candidates for the General Certificate of Education (G.C.E) and grade nine External Examinations will continue paying the examination fees,” he said.
Kamoko said Provincial Education Officers (PEOs) and District Education Board Secretaries (DEBS), respectively, would be expected to properly guide and ensure the immediate implementation of the new dawn government’s education for all policy as it takes effect during the 2022 school calendar year.