Minister of Education Science and Technology, Bright Msaka, has said three more primary schools will be constructed in populous Mbayani township in Blantyre to decongest Mbayani One Primary School.
Speaking after touring Mbayani One Primary School which has 10,00 learners and 74 teachers representing a teacher-pupil ratio of 1:126 against the recommended ratio of 1:60, Msaka said it was appalling to note the congestion.
Msaka said the large number of learners is a draw back to the promotion of quality education in the country as teachers are overwhelmed and pupils’ monitoring and assessment becomes a challenge.
“In the case of Mbayani Township, the ministry plans to construct three additional primary schools that will be within the same locality. This will mean that the schools will be accessible to school-going children and that pupils will be learning in conducive environment.
“All these efforts are done so as to achieve optimum number of teacher to learner ratio which is 1:70 so that teachers will be able to give adequate attention to learners, hence improving quality of education in Malawi,” Msaka added.
Msaka said his ministry already set to start constructing three other primary schools at Likhubula and at Chapima Heights in the area.
The minister also disclosed that the ministry would also recruit additional 6000 teachers to help achieve optimal teacher to pupil ratio.
In his remarks, Head teacher of Mbayani Primary School, Joe Magombo said the school continued to face challenges ranging from inadequate classroom blocks to teachers, a development which affects teaching and learning activities at the school.
Later, the minister also toured Blantyre Secondary School to appreciate how teaching and learning activities were being conducted at the school.