Sandisiwe Gumbo, Sunday News Reporter
SITUATED in Gwanda District in the sprawling Matabeleland South Province, Jason Ziyaphapha (JZ) Moyo High School is not only named after a revolutionary luminary whose legacy cannot be bloated, but the school has also been a true representation of what JZ stood for as it has been giving its learners academic empowerment and freedom.
The school has continued to achieve exceptional results in O and A-level public examinations producing a 100 percent pass rate in A-level after having a similar performance in the 2022 results. For the O-level examinations, the school achieved a 62,8 percent pass rate in 2023.
The results represent improvement from the 38 percent recorded in 2020 and 2021, a year that was significantly impacted by the negative effects of the Covid-19. The improvement continued from the 52,3 percent pass rate achieved in 2022.
Speaking on behalf of the school, Mr Mthulisi Siziba the school’s assistant senior master and the head of year for the A-level classes, highlighted that the pass rate percentage might be the same, but the quality of symbols obtained highlighted a notable improvement when compared to 2022. The school is committed to inclusive education as it enrols students regardless of their academic background, and still manages to produce outstanding academic results, he said.
“Our policy is not to select only brilliant students. We welcome everyone. Our philosophy revolves around education with production, believing that every individual has something valuable to offer. That is why we enrol everyone.”
The school’s success has been attributed to the proactive measures like the recruitment of additional teaching staff, enhanced supervision, and the implementation of monthly awards to foster healthy competition among students.
“We want to improve further and compete with the other schools. We may fail to get to 100 percent because unlike other schools, we do not select brilliant students, we take everyone.”
The most outstanding students for the A-level classes include Mthokozelwa Moyo with 26 points, Professor Mpofu with 25 points, Blessing Moyo with 19 points as well as Tumelo Dube with 18 points. Runisia Mbedzi and Nomsa Ndebele managed to obtain 15 points.
The most outstanding students for the O-level classes with the highest number of As include Ntando Sibanda, Nicole Mpofu, Thamsanqa Nkala, Sabelo Nkala, Methembe Thlou and Benedict Moyo. The school offers a diverse curriculum including practical subjects such as wood technology, metal technology, technical graphics, art, agriculture, textile technology, and food technology. JZ Moyo offers deaf students art lessons and has produced exceptional artists. The practical courses offered also provide certification opportunities through HEXCO. JZ Moyo is undergoing developments, including the transformation of its main entrance and the establishment of a poultry project aimed at breeding at least 1 000 chickens every term.
“These developments are also meant to impact knowledge and skill to our learners as they actually partake in the breeding, garden that we are transforming. It is our policy for every student to partake in gardening and piggery so that when they leave this place they can start their own projects instead of suffering after failing to get employed. We are grooming job creators and not job seekers.”
The rich history of the school rooted in the liberation struggle, as reflective through its name, honouring the iconic national hero Jason Ziyaphapha Moyo.
“It is named after him because the school was founded during the liberation struggle in Zambia. When they got to Zambia they realised there were some who were young who could not carry the gun or be trained to become soldiers to participate in the armed struggle. There were also teachers who had left the country, so those teachers were mobilised and started teaching these kids.
“The schools started in Zambia, it was time for independence and their first stop was at Mbongolo Farm, which is where there is George Silundika High today, one of our sister schools. They had to buy this farm and they relocated and came here. Among the people were those that were taken from Manama High School as young students and it is that group where the first headmaster of the school, Mr Paulus Majaka belonged,” Mr Siziba explained.
Mr Siziba highlighted the school’s vision to become the leading educational institution in Matabeleland South and beyond.
“It is our wish as the stuff at JZ Moyo to continue producing these high flyers, we actually want to be the best school in Matabeleland South and if possible, the whole of the nation.”