Schools near bor­der­line hard hit by Siswati cri­sis

Observer on Saturday - - News -

As the coun­try shares bor­der­lines with South Africa and there are many schools that are near the bor­der­lines, teach­ers have re­vealed that such has a huge im­pact on the Siswati re­sults in schools.

This is be­cause most of these pupils liv­ing near the bor­der­line are used to speak­ing Swati mixed with Zulu and it is not easy for them to grasp the real Siswati lan­guage and have a deeper un­der­stand­ing of it. Dur­ing the con­tri­bu­tion ses­sion of the Siswati panel, it sur­faced that teach­ers also want the Eswa­tini Ex­ams Coun­cil to re­view the way the mark­ing of Siswati scripts is done.

They sus­pect that the mark­ing may also some­how con­trib­ute to the re­sults.

Mean­while, some mem­bers pointed out that they stated ear­lier on that the work­load given to pupils is way be­yond their learn­ing ca­pac­ity.

“Ku­lokunye sake sasho tsine both­ishela kutsi lom­sebenti ubange­tulu kweng­condvo yem­fundzi, kod­vwa emalunga at­sikuya­balun­gela ba­fundzi” one of the mem­bers stated in ver­nac­u­lar.

Some mem­bers who teach both Siswati and English con­fessed that they put more ef­fort in English Lan­guage be­cause it is the pass­ing sub­ject.

“Yes..Nalokutsi vele nje our chil­dren are not al­lowed to speak Siswati etikol­weni.. I re­mem­ber one time ng­icela kutsi fane sikhu­lun­ywe once a week, wuu ngati­sola! Kan­abasati ikakhulu tsine lesise­ce­leni kwem­incele.

Sisenkin­geni nje” a mem­ber stated in ver­nac­u­lar which can be roughly trans­lated to mean she once tried to make a re­quest that the Siswati Lan­guage be spo­ken at least once a week in schools but she was met with re­sis­tance. The panel rec­om­mended that maybe it is also time that they in­clude those re­spon­si­ble for pre­par­ing exam pa­pers and mark­ers and get their views on what could be done. An­other sug­ges­tion was that the panel must also look at past pa­pers and match them against the cur­rent per­for­mance.

The panel said it will also take con­tri­bu­tions from Siswati teach­ers at schools.

“This is­sue is se­ri­ously sur­rounded by at­ti­tudes. Par­ents them­selves do not buy to this siSwati ind­aba, de­ci­sion mak­ers in some sec­tors do not buy into men­tor­ing our chil­dren to love their own lan­guage.

“We need to stand up, or­gan­ise a mini con­fer­ence on this mat­ter .... coz teach­ers ban­genta nobe ngabe yini afike um­tali atsi sonale siSwati sitakusita phi...uve a whole in­spec­tor kum­phun­yuke lanaye abuta kutsi sisita velele siSwati...so at­ti­tudes must rad­i­cally ad­dressed here” one of the mem­bers of the panel com­mented.

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