HARARE – Government has said there is a critical shortage of Early Childhood Development (ECD) and Indigenous Languages teachers, while the entire education sector faces a shortfall of 25,000 teachers.
The Civil Service Commission has hired more than 50% of the 10,000 teachers requested by the Department of Primary and Secondary Education.
Despite the recruitment made so far, there is a shortage of 14,527 early childhood teachers, 6,527 primary teachers, 3,170 secondary teachers and 1,107 secondary teachers, according to the government.
Minister of Primary and Secondary Education, Evelyn Ndlovu said the shortage of educators was affecting teacher-student relations, with most of the bottlenecks being among young children in rural areas.
Minister Ndlovu said the government was prioritizing areas with critical skills shortages when deploying teachers.
“In this system, teachers in the critical skill area are deployed earlier than others with more readily available qualifications.
“Areas with critical skills shortages include ECD, science, technical and vocational and indigenous languages, and areas with special needs,” Ndlovu said.
The minister called on lawmakers to encourage communities to include education in indigenous languages, as these are key to solving the problem of zero-pass patents.
The Department of Primary and Secondary Education has adopted a policy to address the pass rate in schools as part of the inclusive education approach.