Malawi sci-tech curriculum not up to standards—NyaLonje

Education minister, Agnes NyaLonje, has admitted the country’s education national curriculum needs a vehement review, especially in its science and technology aspects, so that it lives up to modern worldly standards.

NyaLonje said during a three-day consultative meeting on enhancing the domestication of science, technology and innovations in Africa in the capital Lilongwe, that Malawi’s current science curriculum was too broad.

Minister of Education, Honourable Agnes Nyalonje giving a presentation during the meeting- picture by Joseph Chikalipo

According to her, it was imperative that the country fits in innovative aspects in the curriculum and ensure enhanced implementation of science and technology from early childhood education in line with Malawi 2063.

“Science, technology and innovations are the heart for development. We need to build capacity for producing new goods and services we can export and this can only happen if we adopt innovative mindset from the grassroots.

“The starting point is looking at our education system from early childhood, primary education, secondary education, technical as well tertiary education. If we can gauge how much science is being taught, we will work through the knowledge gaps to enhance science, technology and innovations,” NyaLonje was quoted as saying by the Malawi News Agency (MANA).

She said it was imperative that more stakeholder meetings are done for experts to brainstorm the value chain of science and technology particularly in the communities.

“The Malawi Academy of Science which was launched a few weeks ago is already working on a needs assessment programme to thoroughly look at how best the Malawian syllabus on science and technology could be improved,” she said.

One of the main presenters during the meeting, Dr. Justina Dugbazah pic by Joseph Chikalipo (Mana)

Senior Programme Officer for African Union Development Agency (AUDA), Dr. Justina Dugbazah, said the Africa Union (AU) Agenda 2063 recognizes the role of science, technology and innovations for economic development yet Africa faces a lot of resistance in her exploring of freedom to innovate.

She bemoaned Africa’s low contribution to the global pool of scientific knowledge evidenced by slow implementation of adopted policies and low levels of investment in science technology and innovations as most African countries have not attained 1 percent of Gross Domestic Production (GDP) expenditure.

“At national level, member states should incorporate this strategy into their national development plans and develop local interventions. It is essential to establish efficient effective and coordinated financing mechanisms to implement the strategy,” she said.

The meeting, which was organized by African Union Development Agency (AUDA-NEPAD) with support from African Development Bank, has attracted delegates from all parts of the continent to strategize on how science technology and innovations can be enhanced at continental, regional and national levels.

(Additional reporting by James Nthondo—Nyasa Times)

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