Government Makes Changes To Education Curriculum, CALA

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Government Makes Changes To Education Curriculum, CALA
Government Makes Changes To Education Curriculum, CALA

Africa-Press – Zimbabwe. The Government on Tuesday, 27 February announced changes to the education curriculum. Under the proposed Heritage-Based Education 2024-2030 curriculum framework, learning the History of Zimbabwe will become compulsory.

The Continuous Assessment Learning Areas (CALA) will now be called school-based projects with an emphasis on the learner being observed carrying out the practical aspect at school.

At the infant level (ECD A to Grade 2), learning areas are being reduced from the previous eleven to six. The reduction will also apply at Junior Level (Grades 3 to 7).

At secondary school level, the core and compulsory learning areas are being reduced from seven to five.

Speaking during a post-cabinet media briefing yesterday, Information, Publicity and Broadcasting Services Minister Jenfan Muswere said the proposed curriculum will embrace heritage as a basis for learning and infusing technology and shall be implemented from ECD up to Advanced Level. Said Muswere:

Cabinet received and approved the Heritage-Based Education 2024-2030, which was presented by the Minister of Higher and Tertiary Education, Innovation, Science and Technology Development, Honourable Prof A Murwira, as the chairperson of the Cabinet Committee on Human Capital Development, Skills Development and Application.

The nation is informed that the Heritage-Based Education 2024-2030 curriculum framework is expected to transform the education system to produce citizens with relevant skills, applied knowledge, values, and dispositions that are key to national development, beginning with the communities they serve.

The primary and secondary education system is being designed to mould productive learners who will cherish and practise the Zimbabwean philosophical orientation of Unhu/Ubuntu.

The proposed curriculum will embrace heritage as a basis for learning and infusing technology and shall be implemented from ECD up to upper secondary school level.

The pathways, whose learning areas are provided for in the framework, are Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM); Visual and Performing Arts; Humanities, the history of Zimbabwe; Technical/ Vocational Education and Training (TVET); and Commercials.

Cabinet wishes to inform the nation that Heritage-Based Education will be anchored on the following pillars: (a) programmes/ learning areas infrastructure; (b) staffing infrastructure; (c) physical and digital infrastructure; (d) legal and regulatory infrastructure; and (e) financial infrastructure.

Pertinent issues in the learning programmes infrastructure include rationalisation of learning areas; and strengthening the school-based continuous assessment.

At infant level (ECD A to Grade 2), learning areas are being reduced from the previous eleven to six. The reduction will also apply at Junior Level (Grades 3 to 7).

At secondary school level, the core and compulsory learning areas are being reduced from seven to five.

An inclusive and integrated approach will be used to cater for learners with special needs, including through provision of assistive devices.

It is envisaged that the identification of pathways will be implemented early when enrolling learners for secondary education, in order to cater for differences in talent and ability.

Learners at secondary school level will study at least three electives from the following categories: the sciences; languages; humanities; commercials; technical and vocational; and physical education and arts.

The review of the assessment modalities and tools will entail the rationalisation of CALA (Continuous Assessment Learning Area) activities now denoted as school-based projects which emphasise on the learner being observed carrying out the practical aspect at school.

The future of the country will increasingly be shaped by science and technology, hence the bias in the education system to foster critical thinking, innovation, creativity, problem-solving and programming.

As the learners enrol for secondary school level, they are then categorized according to their areas of proficiency.

Central to the delivery of quality learning is the capacitation of teachers since the heritage-based curriculum requires a different approach.

Focus will be placed on in-service teacher training and coaching, using locally available resources. The inquiry-based teaching approaches and methods pillar aims to transform teaching practices from the traditional rote learning, lecture and drill to more learner-centred approaches where pupils have space to develop their creativity, to develop and express their ideas, to collaborate with one another, to learn by doing and thereby experience holistic development.

Personnel qualified in technical and vocational programmes will be considered for employment as teachers in relevant learning areas.

This is expected to increase the absorption of post-O Level students in tertiary education institutions in the country and form the foundation of start-ups for enterprising learners.

Suitable and appropriate physical and digital infrastructure will be provided. Closely related will be the provision of adequate and appropriate infrastructure including classrooms; workshops; laboratories; internet connectivity; technical equipment and teachers’ houses; in order to achieve the intended goals.

The workshops and laboratories shall be tailor-made according to the unique geographical needs and locally available resources which learners can observe, manipulate and explore during their learning processes.

Access to electricity, either from the national grid or renewable sources of energy will be a priority for every school. This is in order to bridge the gap between the rural and urban schools. The focus will be more on learning by doing.

In order to actualise the aims of our education system, a review of the legal and regulations infrastructure will be undertaken.

This shall include the alignment of the Heritage-Based Education Curriculum with Section 13 of the Constitution of Zimbabwe which states that “The State and all institutions and agencies of Government at every level must endeavour to facilitate rapid and equitable development”.

Policies and regulations will be implemented to ensure that no place or individual is left behind as the curriculum is implemented.

There will also be continuous harmonisation of the primary and secondary education curriculum with the higher education curriculum.

With a view to fulfilling the mantra of leaving no one and no place behind, the nation is informed that Government will ensure the provision of conducive teaching and learning infrastructure in rural areas, small-scale and commercial farming areas as well as old and new resettlement areas. A needs analysis will be conducted in all areas in-order to guide implementation.

With a view to ensuring sustained transformation, the history of Zimbabwe will become a compulsory subject on the curriculum.

National shrines and cultural heritage sites will be included throughout the curriculum, and the National Pledge will be accorded special emphasis in order to entrench patriotism, loyalty and respect and thereby inculcate the proper mindset.

Products of the education system should know that Zimbabwe comes first. The examination framework will be reviewed to cater for not just the academically gifted learners but also for the technical and vocational-oriented learners.

The national e-learning strategy will be enhanced. Diasporans who are also part of the initiative will continue to support the programme, which has already commenced in Chipinge, Chivi and Beitbridge districts.

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