GOVERNMENT says it is considering decentralising the recruitment of teachers with special focus on the marginalised rural areas.
Primary and Secondary Education minister Torerai Moyo revealed this last week while responding to questions from legislators who raised concern on the current centralised system.
The legislators blamed the centralised system for deploying teachers to areas that they are not interested in.
“Government has a deliberate policy to ensure that teachers, come 2024, we are going to have a decentralised recruitment Mr Speaker Sir, so that we deal with those. “Most disadvantaged districts are going to have teachers and our learners will not be disadvantaged as teachers are deployed to areas that they are not interested in.
“It was a culmination of the policy of centralised deployment.
We have identified the disadvantages of centralised deployment whereby a person from Manicaland is deployed to Matabeleland North,” Moyo said.
Moyo said teachers did not stay in the area they are deployed to.
“After serving for two months, that person wishes to go back to Manicaland. In order to address that problem, that is why we are going to resort to decentralisation so that we encourage teachers from Matabeleland to be deployed in areas of their choice, most likely in their home provinces,” he said.
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Moyo said such challenges had forced government to consider decentralising recruitment of teachers.
The government recently said it planned to train more teachers to address the shortage of nearly 20 000 educators.
However, the authorities are embroiled in a labour dispute with educators over poor salaries and working conditions.
The teachers are demanding a pre-October 2018 salary of US$540 per month before President Emmerson Mnangagwa re-introduced the local currency in 2019.
Teachers have also been quitting the profession for the diaspora in search of better pay, leaving a huge shortfall in the country.
According to the education ministry, Zimbabwe has a component of 136 000 teachers.