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Qualified teachers from diaspora stranded

Over 6 000 qualified school teachers who returned to Zimbabwe after years in the Diaspora are yet to be cleared by Government to resume work in 2015.

File picture of teacher with pupils
File picture of teacher with pupils

The clearance is likely to take up to three weeks. The teachers are among a contingent of professionals who returned home after spending the 2007-8 hyperinflation period seeking greener pastures in the Diaspora.

Upon their return, they were re-admitted as temporary staff. As such, they are required to apply to the Ministry of Primary and Secondary Education each term for re-admission.

This rigorous constant vetting determines whether or not the tutors still possess teaching acumen. Primary and Secondary Education Deputy Minister Professor Paul Mavhima said while deploying qualified teachers was important, due process should be followed.

He said: “The process is very normal; it is followed by most employers before engaging employees that would have left before. We are actually prioritising deployment of qualified teachers in every school. However, certain re-deployment procedures have to be followed.”

Progressive Teachers’ Union of Zimbabwe president Mr Takavafira Zhou implored the ministry and Civil Service Commission to expedite vetting.

“We have received reports of shortages of qualified teachers in some areas and many schools have temporary teachers. The situation should be addressed as we do not want to affect our education standards.

“We are appealing to the authorities to refine the process because re-admission at times takes more than four years instead of about two to three years.”

Zimbabwe Teachers’ Association (Zimta) chief executive officer Mr Sifiso Ndlovu said: “There is need for these teachers to be patient because due process needs to be followed to make sure those being re-integrated into the system are of reputable standards.” The Sunday Mail

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