The Zimbabwean and South African Governments are working towards regularisation of the teaching profession to deal with unemployed but qualified teachers in Zimbabwe and at the same time address the need gap in South Africa in a collaborative manner.
The process is expected to see Zimbabwean teachers in South Africa being registered and licensed.
The move comes against the backdrop of an unquantifiable number of qualified Zimbabwean teachers working in South Africa. Some of the them are not in the education sector and those in the education sector are employed mostly in private schools, where authorities cannot easily monitor their conditions of service.
Addressing a press conference, flanked by South Africa’s Basic Education Minister Angelina Motshekga, after a two-day conference on identifying possible areas of cooperation, Primary and Secondary Education Minister Dr Lazaraus Dokora said issues of human resources, research, curriculum implementation and assessment are earmarked for collaboration.
“The way we have discussed this issue is to say that, when our teachers proceed to work in South Africa, we want to know where they are, how they are being deployed and we also safeguard their interests,” said Dr Dokora.
He said the collaboration was meant to find a common ground with South Africa for the benefit of not only the two countries but also the teachers themselves.
Dr Dokora said both countries also need to cooperate on curriculum implementation and assessment to modernise the two in line with the demands of the 21st century.
“We have shared matters of mutual interest, their experiences and our experiences too and we have agreed to continue collaboration together in the area of assessment,” said Dr Dokora.
He said other areas include educational conferences to keep learning from each other and arts festivals.
Minister Motshekga said South Africa had always held Zimbabwe’s education system in high esteem and therefore had a lot to learn.
She said one area her Government was keen to learn from Zimbabwe was the area of public examinations in which, she said, the country was way ahead compared to South Africa.
“Historically, South Africa looks forward to the education system of Zimbabwe and thus we never hesitated to take up your invitation to this meeting to see how best we can collaborate,” she said.
Minister Motshekga said a series of meetings will follow the engagement with her Zimbabwean counterpart to start operationalising other areas that do not necessarily require Memoranda of Understanding. By Paidamoyo Chipunza and Praise Bvumbamera, source-chronicle