Coltart warns Govt over teachers

via Coltart warns Govt over teachers – The StandardJune 8, 2014 Edgar Gweshe

Former Education minister, David Coltart says government should treat the issue of teachers’ salaries as a matter of urgency or risk plunging the education sector into turmoil.


In an interview, Coltart said that government’s failure to address the issue of teachers’ salaries and working conditions was killing morale among the teaching staff.

He warned that the situation could get out of control if government did not take steps to address teachers’ concerns.

“If you have committed teachers, then you have a strong education system. Teachers make the difference and if we do not address teachers’ concerns then the education sector will be under threat,” said Coltart.

“Teachers are the most important facet of any education sector and government should be able to look into their concerns.”

The Progressive Teachers Union of Zimbabwe (PTUZ) has since sought audience with President Robert Mugabe following government’s failure to improve their salaries and working conditions.

The PTUZ has also hinted on embarking on a job action in the event that their concerns are not addressed. The union also took a swipe at Education minister, Lazarus Dokora for failing teachers and bringing disastrous policies to the education sector.

Salaries for Zimbabwean teachers are below the country’s Poverty Datum Line (PDL) which is currently pegged at around US$560.

Neighbouring countries such as Botswana have since offered lucrative salaries for Zimbabwean teachers willing to work in their country, a development that could lead to further brain drain in the education sector.

Said Coltart: “I am concerned about the declining morale among teachers in the country. It has to be noted that before we talk of the success of the education sector, we have to make sure that teachers’ concerns are addressed but the current situation is very worrisome and poses a major threat.”

The former education minister was not convinced government would be able to carry forward with programmes introduced during his tenure that were meant to improve the education sector.

“We identified that teachers’ conditions of service were poor and morale was very low. I secured US$23 million from the Global Education Project for teacher retraining which was meant to be implemented starting this year,” he said.

“One of the goals that we had set was a review of the curriculum but I do not see much on the curriculum review programme and I remain concerned about the declining morale among teachers.”



  • comment-avatar

    Education is the future… Good education with smart curricula will bring a good future.

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    Petal 10 years ago

    thanks to Mr. Coltart for stepping in to support the teachers but do you thing the Buffoons are prepared to listen to you?

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    Petal 10 years ago

    when the greedy thieving scum bags are splashing money on cars for the MPs only to have a thieving scumbag idiot like Themba Mliswa complain they are substandard and the teachers will not receiving salaries when they are not in school e.g. holidays and increase the consultation fees to see a GP just says it all they do not get their priorities right because of their greed

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    Observer 10 years ago

    I have no gripe with teachers seeking better working conditions but the issue of teacher incentives left a sour taste in the mouths of other public servants thereby creating the “mbudzi inodya payakasungirwa” syndrome(a goat forages around where it is tied).Every other public servant devised rent seeking strategies at their place of work and if you need a service,you pay for it.We now have a tollgate economy where everyone charges/pays for right of passage.Treat public servants equally.All are important.

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    zindman 10 years ago

    the mbudzi inodya payakasungirirwa syndrome was introduced during coltat’s tenure. now the former minister thinks he was better off than dokora. none the less, he initiated the whole civil service into one of the worst social vices ever witnessed in zimbabwe-corruption.the incentives issue was the goblin, ndicho chaiva chikwambo chacho, chaipedzera vabereki mari.he thinks he has the support of teachers. forget man, you divided teachers, urban and rural,and condemned rural teachers, the majority of teachers,into sordid and abject poverty. today they can not compare with their urban counterparts, a shameful legacy left by coltate.

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    zanupf fear me 10 years ago

    To begin with there is no money. Secondly most teachers are brainy hence they don’t support zanupf. Hence zanupf will not support them. Zanupf doesn’t care about zims education as its useless spolt brats are schooled in Malaysia Singapore RSA UK USA Australia etc. The nurses teachers lose out while the rest of the zanoid corrupt departments get maybe some breadcrumbs from their masters tables

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    nyoni 10 years ago

    Coltart is right to say the teachers must be looked after chete. Their welfare affects our children , the future of the country. This really is pissing me off now. WHAT IS ZANU DOING!ARE YOU FOR ZIMBABWE OR NOT !TELL US NOW YOU SCUMBAGS.

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    Leave Coltart alone you goons. Teachers are not like the rest of the civil servants. They have no T and S like the rest. They don’t have access to telephone and actually are honest to buy airtime to phone. The rest are glued to departmental phones and milk gvt there. Have u seen trs attending workshops and get t&s. If they do, not many, but check on others. Teachers actually uspent entire time w students, are forced to drink mazowe when attending sporting events. The rest of civil servants do not work over weekends but trs are forced to. Coltart dd well to restore dignity of trs. He has never scolded in the press, but check on the records of Dokora ang Chigwedere including the president whom I thought being a former tr was supposed to protect them. I have not heard defence minister scolding soldiers

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    Saddened 10 years ago

    Only those who are ignorant or biased will comment negatively about the performance of David Coltart as minister of Education. Without the excellent teachers of the 50’s & 60’s many of those in power today would not have received a decent education that allowed them to become qualified. ‘Zindman’ should read the comments from ‘Kowanai’ to get an insight into the difference between teachers and the many who masquerade as civil servants.

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    Coltart did a good honest job. It is sad that such men and women are not in leadership. may the Lord raise up a leader for this nation; a man after His own heart. This is my deep deep cry for Zimbabwe

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    Petal 10 years ago

    very sad because neighbouring countries like Botswana used to send their children to school here- it was known for the best place to educate a child, now things have taken a downturn