Ministry, Public Service to meet over jobs freeze
THE Ministry of Primary and Secondary Education will this week engage the Public Service Commission (PSC) to ensure that the education sector is not affected by the recent decision to freeze recruitments in the civil service.
The Government has with immediate effect frozen recruitments and promotions in the civil service as part of its staff rationalisation exercise in line with recommendations of the Civil Service Report of 2015.
A senior official in the Primary and Secondary Education Ministry yesterday said they will engage the Public Service Commission to ensure that the hiring of teachers in the country continues.
“The Permanent Secretary will start engaging the Public Service Commission tomorrow (today) to find out how the job freeze will affect the education sector.
“The Ministry is grappling with a serious shortage of teachers, especially in rural areas, with some schools being run by deputy heads,” said the official, who spoke on condition of anonymity.
Zimbabwe Teachers’ Association (Zimta) president Mr Richard Gundane yesterday said they were against the job freeze as it would compromise education delivery in the country.
“What the Government must remember is that we have not yet achieved the required staff complement in the education sector. The freezing of jobs can’t therefore be easily applied in the education sector,” he said.
Mr Gundane said teachers that die, retire or resign need to be replaced as well.
He said the freezing of posts was coming at a critical time when the country is in the process of rolling out the new education curriculum, which demands that schools have the required number of teachers.
“The education system must be able to adapt to the new curriculum. There will be need for new people into the system with the required expertise.
“On the promotions, it’s a legitimate expectation in any system that people are promoted when they reach a certain level. The freezing of jobs shortchanges progression of officers in the career path of their profession. We’re therefore against the government’s decision,” said Mr Gundane.
In June, Education Minister Lazarus Dokora said the government had plans to recruit about 10 000 teachers and headmasters, most of whom would be posted to rural schools in a bid to alleviate the severe shortage of qualified teachers.
During the same month, the government announced that it would recruit 303 school heads to be deployed in Matabeleland North province alone.
Mr Richard Gundane