‘All About Bad Planning’

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By Frederick Philander WINDHOEK Bad and unscientific planning on the part of the ministry of Education is the main reason for the accommodation shortage presently prevailing at schools. This charge was yesterday made during a press conference by the Teachers Union of Namibia’s (TUN) president, Gert Jansen at its headquarters in Khomasdal. “The school accommodation problem is made worse due to the fact that new residential areas are built without any schools, whilst teachers staffing norms are hampering the smooth running of the country’s education system. It all boils down to the fact that the government must build more schools,” Gert Jansen said. In TUN’s opinion the present education system does not work at all. “The Cambridge education system was thrown out of Britain, its birthplace, and was dumped onto Namibia. The impression is that the system, which poses no challenges to learners, has to remain in place because somebody somewhere hugely benefits by its continued existence in the country. From an aesthetic point of view, education should lead to life, our system is leading to disaster,” said TUN’s deputy president Chanville Mackrill. Mackrill claimed that when his union speaks out about the many problems encountered in the education system, its members are accused of being unpatriotic and disloyal. “The education system blindly follows a wrong work plan in the application thereof. Its curriculum is of no real value to learners. Hence the poor yearly Grade 10 results,” said Mahongora Kavihuha, coordinator of professional development. Gert Jansen suggested the 2005 Grades 10 and 12 results be investigated. “Namibian education is a national disaster and TUN calls for a state of emergency because since its inception in 1993, the education system never delivered satisfactory results that the nation can be proud of. In light of this TUN will use any mechanism to fight all elements negatively affecting teachers and the whole education sector,” said Jansen, who indicated that he and his deputy would lobby the World Confederation of Teachers for assistance during its four-yearly congress to be held in Spain at the end of this month. The TUN executive committee also welcomed the recently established Anti-Corruption Commission and also announced that Henriette Sassman of Khomasdal has voluntarily availed four classrooms to the ministry of Education to assist in the dire shortage.

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