Govt shares more insights on new education policy, curricular

DAR ES SALAAM: REFORMS in education sector as entailed in the new Education Policy and Curricular of 2023 are fully integrative and holistic, with equal status to all subjects and learning domains from Mathematics to Sports, the government has said.

Minister for Education, Science and Technology Professor Adolph Mkenda said in Dar es Salaam on Thursday that the new policy and curricular endorsed by the cabinet in October last year, have started to be partially implemented.

“We have already started implementing the new education and training policy as well as new curricular in January 2024. There are huge changes that started for pre-primary, Standard One, to three for primary schools and Form One for secondary schools,” said the minister.

Prof Mkenda said that in 2027 the government will come up with a double cohort procedure, where two groups will graduate from high school at the same time. He said the new curricular for Form One, is divided into two streams – vocational skills stream and general education stream, saying further changes will come in 2027, where the government will start implementing a compulsory ten-year system.

“We come up with two streams, one is the vocational skills stream and other is the general stream. In vocational stream we will invest more in skills training,” said Prof Mkenda.

“Logically it is a nightmare to start the whole changes at a go…that is why we have started gradually. We are quite optimistic it will transform the country’s education sector because its focus is competence and skills based,” he said.

He said the reforms in education sector was part of President Samia Suluhu Hassan’s 4Rs, which represent Reconciliation, Resilience, Reforms and Rebuilding and are essential for addressing the current social, political and economic issues in the country.

“This particular one in education sector, falls under reforms because it is the government’s intention to make reforms in each and every sector,” said Prof Mkenda.

Addressing the Parliament in Dodoma in April, 2021 for the first time since she was sworn in as Head of State, President Samia Suluhu Hassan said the government will focus on reviewing the 2014 Education Policy. She said the national curricula review will enable the country to obtain the required skilled labour force for its industries and other services.

Elaborating, Prof Mkenda said the new curricular is designed across the five stages of 1+6+4+2/3+3+, including addressing education for the age group 5 to 20 years, across the entire range of diverse institutions in Tanzania.

The formula stands for one year of pre-primary education, six years of primary education, four -years of ordinary secondary education, two years of advanced secondary or three years of technical education and three years + tertiary or higher learning education.

He said the education reform has continued to scale up where 96 schools are enlisted for vocational skills stream. He said out of 96, the government-owned schools are 28 and while private ones are 68.

Moreover, he said schools must get permission from the commissioner of education before implementing the vocational skills stream since the government wants to be assured that the education which will be offered meets the criteria that have been set, including the presence of the working tools.

However, Prof Mkenda said entrepreneurship will be compulsory subject to secondary education in both general and vocational streams.

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