School pockets $1,3m reward for excellence

Source: School pockets $1,3m reward for excellence | The Herald

School pockets $1,3m reward for excellence
Mrs Tumisang Thabela

Blessings Chidakwa Herald Reporter

A Harare primary school has received $1,3 million from the Government for demonstrating academic, cultural and sporting excellence and espousing the principles of a Child Friendly School.

Alexandra Park Primary School won the Ministry of Primary and Secondary Education Permanent Secretary’s Merit Award.

Presenting the award and unveiling a plaque at the school last week, Ministry of Primary and Secondary Education Permanent Secretary Mrs Tumisang Thabela said this was in honour of the hard work exhibited by the school staff and the School Development Committee.

“The Secretary’s Merit Award is one of the Ministry’s supervision strategies to improve service delivery through awarding this accolade to excelling schools that would have demonstrated academic, cultural and sporting excellence, including other tenets of a Child Friendly School,” she said.

“Alexandra Park Primary School is a proud recipient of the Secretary’s Merit Award of which its attainment was through tireless support, team work and hard work. This is also a way of empowering the school and particularly the learners as we respond to the needs and requirements of the competence based curriculum that the Ministry of Primary and Secondary introduced in 2017.”

Mrs Thabela said the $1,3 million cash prize was meant for the development of a smart classroom with an interactive board.

“I want to challenge all schools in this province to complement the Ministry’s efforts by embracing ICT as both a learning area and a teaching method (e-learning),” she said.

“By tradition, the focus has been on academic performance, but the Ministry’s thrust is now to ensure that all schools offer a holistic Competence Based Curriculum, which Alexandra Park Primary School has fruitfully done.

“This curriculum is meant to equip learners with 21st century skills and exit profiles such as critical thinking, problem solving, communication and team building, leadership, technological advancement, enterprise, as well as Unhu/Ubuntu/Vumunhu, among others.”

School Development Committee chairperson Mr Xolani Ngwenya said winning the award was a proud achievement which should be maintained.

“This is commendable and the money from the Government is actually a timely boost,” he said. “We have recently introduced online lessons and one of the challenges that we had is the gadgets to use. The school managed to buy a few, but with limited resources there was still a gap, so that money actually came at the right time and will go towards the online lessons implementation.”

The school head Mrs Fungai Koza said it was exciting that the institution had finally reaped the fruits of hard work.

“Hard work and unity of purpose was the secret behind our success,” she said. “In addition, we give credit to our SDC, parents, teachers and learners for their hard work and sacrifice.”

“The lifetime achievement will go a long way in spurring the school to greater heights as we will not rest on our laurels, but continue striving for the best, particularly in the provision of quality education and relevant and learner centred curricula.”