Catholic commission urges Zim govt to prioritise education reform

The Catholic Commission for Justice and Peace in Zimbabwe (CCJPZ) has called on the government to improve the education system in the country and ensure access to quality education. 

The Catholic organization’s remarks coincided with the celebration of Africa Day and its theme, “Education Fit for the 21st Century.”

“It is concerning to note that many African government officials’ children are not educated in their countries. This raises questions about their commitment to improving the education systems in their countries. It may imply that they do not even believe in their own systems. This is a critical issue that must be addressed if we are to achieve Agenda 2063 and build a prosperous and peaceful Africa,” the statement read.

“To make this a reality, we urge States to prioritise education in national budgets, ensure inclusive access to quality education, and invest in teacher training and infrastructure development. This includes allocating at least 20% of national budgets to education, ensuring that all children, regardless of gender, race, or disability, have access to quality education.”

CCJPZ noted that there is a need to provide ongoing training and support for teachers to ensure they are equipped to provide quality education. 

“The government must also invest in infrastructure development, including schools, libraries, and technology, encourage community involvement in education through volunteer programs and community-based initiatives, promote vocational skills and lifelong learning opportunities to adapt to the changing needs of society. There is need to ensure education policies prioritise the needs of marginalised communities, including women, girls, and persons with disabilities,” the statement read. 

CCJPZ called on civil society organisations to advocate for education policies that promote social justice, support community-based education initiatives, and partner with governments to ensure effective implementation. 

“CSOs must advocate for education policies that prioritise the needs of marginalised communities, support community-based initiatives that provide education and skills training. They must partner with governments to ensure effective implementation of education policies,” the statement read. 

“Citizens should value education, support local education initiatives, and demand accountability from leaders in ensuring quality education for all which includes prioritising education in personal and collective lives, supporting local education initiatives, such as volunteering at schools or supporting education-focused organisations and holding leaders accountable for ensuring quality education for all.”

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