Ministry of Education, Science and Technology has clarified that selection of students into public secondary schools has been done strictly on merit.
The ministry said in a statement made available to Nyasa Times by Principal Secretary Justin Saidi that the selection of Form One students to national secondary schools has not segregated children from the northern region as being claimed by others.
The statement said 42% of students who passed the Primary School Leaving Certificate of Education (PSLCE) in the northern region were selected, 37.4 % from central region and 35% from southern region.
The ministry dismissed the accusation that it used quota system of selecting students to public schools.
“It is important to note that national secondary schools, as the name connotes, are national, as such they do not belong to a division or region and those deserving are allocated to any of these ,” Saidi said.
“It should be appreciated that national secondary schools further north have more students from the North than from other divisions. Similarly, national secondary schools further South have more students from the South than from other divisions, and the Central Region has a blend of all divisions and or both the Southern and Northern region,” reads the statement in part.
The PS urged Malawians not to sensationalise and politicise national interest information.
“Ministry approaches selection exercise with great professionalism, seriousness and ample measure if sobriety.
“Above all, the ministry conducts selection activity wearing national lenses,” said Saidi.
He said government’s intervention to build 250 secondary schools with seven earmarked for each of the country’s 28 district and 100 Community Day Secondary Schools, “access to quality secondary education will greatly improve”.
Education activist Limbani Nsapato also said Ministry of Education was right that “there is no quota system in selecting students to secondary schools in Malawi. “
He wrote on social media: “Government uses merit, proximity and economic principles in selecting those that have passed PSLCE to secondary schools. Let’s not politicize everything.”
Breaking down the 2019 secondary school selection district and per region, Nsapato noted that “the North has lions share, south has the sheep share. Congrats to the North for the highest selection percentage, even though the North had lowest PSLCE pass rate of the three regions.”Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :