By Obey Manayiti
18th June 2017
BLAKISTON Primary School in Harare has started offering driving lessons as the government’s controversial education reforms begin to take root.
The government school in the capital’s Milton Park area notified parents about the new developments through a secular last week.
“Come and register at the school,” read the circular targeting those who want to take provisional and defensive driving oral lessons.
“For those who have registered, you can bring $10 for materials,” the circular added.
The school is also offering cake-making lessons and is considering introducing sewing lessons.
Primary and Secondary Education ministry spokesperson Patrick Zumbo said the lessons at Blakiston were part of the informal education programme introduced by the government.
“We are even encouraging people who are as old as me and who want to join non-formal education to come for such skills training being offered by schools,” he said.
“There is nothing wrong with that practice, in fact, we are even encouraging it.
“These are schools and previously we used to have what we called adult education where people were just being taught how to read and write.
“We have now gone beyond that and these are skills that we can offer to the communities for example metal work, someone might even say let me go and further my skills.”
Zumbo added: “Such people will come in under the non-formal group with their own class full of adult people who are only interested in gaining skills.
“We are encouraging almost all our schools including primary and secondary ones to introduce what we call non-formal education.”
Zumbo said the initiative was a way of giving back to society.
“Schools are there to service their communities and here it’s not only about monetary value,” he said. “We are a service provider and we are providing services to the communities.”
Primary and Secondary Education minister Lazarus Dokora has introduced a number of controversial reforms since he took over from David Coltart in 2013.