School management sacrifices learning space for hostel

School management at Kabzala Community Day Secondary School in Traditional Authority (T.A.) Mavwere in Mchinji has turned a two-classroom block into a girls’ hostel to accommodate female learners on campus.

Some girls inside the hostel

In an interview, deputy head teacher for the school institution, Terencio Gwirize said the decision was reached to keep female learners close to the school.

He said allowing the female learners to commute from their homes was not viable.

Gwirize said most female learners in the area opt out of school and get married before completing their secondary education.

The move to turn a classroom block into a hostel, according to the deputy head teacher, was, therefore, aimed at motivating the female learners to concentrate on their studies.

“At this school, we do not have a girls’ hostel. As such, most learners cover long distances to come to school. Alternatively, we allowed the learners to find accommodation in the nearby villages but that did not work as most of the girls found it an opportunity for sexual promiscuities which resulted in pregnancies,” he said.

However, the decision to accommodate the female learners in the two-classroom block has forced some learners to take lessons in a make-shift structure made of some grass materials.

Head girl for the school, Aness Lesson said it was worrisome that some classes have to be taken from improvised structures.

However, she said it was necessary to house the female learners as most of them travel long distances to the school.

“We are happy that management made the decision to keep us on campus without charging us.

“However, it is also worrisome that our friends are learning in an improvised structure. I wish we had a proper hostel and enough classrooms without compromising the other,” said Lesson.

Chairperson for Kabzala School Management Committee, Henry Mataka, said they have approached authorities for possible help on the matter but they have not responded.

He said the community has already molded bricks and put aside some land where a proper hostel structure can be built.

“Since establishment in 1997, our school has never had a proper hostel. So, we made the decision out of despair to help our female learners.

“We have approached our member of parliament (MP) for this area on the same who is yet to respond,” said Mataka.

When contacted, MP for the area, Agnes Mkusa Nkhoma said she was aware of the problem and that were there to erect a hostel at the school.

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Erik P
Erik P
27 days ago

That’s a good idea, and hopefully it will help. There really needs to be far more work on initial social education to prevent girls having early pregnancies. Doing so gives greater work opportunities for women, means they can support future children properly (and educate them) and slows the still very high rate of population growth in Malawi.

kamwendomnjira
kamwendomnjira
27 days ago

Good initiative. however, health and safety should be taken serious. I hope we have standard description of the minimum hostel structure requirements. Equally important is standard boarding facility requirement.

Mzwanya
Mzwanya
26 days ago
Reply to  kamwendomnjira

For sure. I totally agree with you

nafundo zalo
nafundo zalo
26 days ago
Reply to  kamwendomnjira

exactly.

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