THE country’s education sector has the highest inflation compared to other sectors, according to the latest Zimbabwe Statistics Agency (ZimStat) report.
ZimStat says education had the highest inflation at 30% as of September following a hike in tuition fees.
“Zimbabwe’s major groups with high inflation in September 2022 are: Education (30%), housing, water, electricity, gas and other fuels (12,10%), communication (8,60%) clothing and footwear (4,90%), health (3,50%) and transport (2,20%),” the report read.
Early this month, University of Zimbabwe (UZ) students staged protests over a 1 000% tuition fee hike that saw learners being asked to pay as much as $500 000 per semester for undergraduate degrees.
But government said the university fees were subsidised and cheaper compared to other countries, stoking more protests. UZ authorities later reviewed the fees downwards.
Government and private schools also hiked fees when schools opened for the third term, with some learning institutions exclusively demanding United States dollars.
Last month, World Remit 2022 Cost of School ranked Zimbabwe’s education as one of the most expensive, leading to a rise in school dropouts.
The report said the cost of education in Zimbabwe was six times more than the total average income for any family.
“To advance this annual study, World Remit observed 11 new countries, looking at the standard school supply costs. Of these, Zimbabwe showed the highest costs relative to average family size and monthly income at nearly 700% of the average household income,” the report read in part.
“In Zimbabwe, costs to send a household of children to school this year will (be) more than six times the average household income for a given family.”
Teacher unions have predicted an increase in school dropouts this year owing to the harsh economic climate and given that government has given schools the greenlight to charge fees in foreign currency.