The Ministry of Education has issued a statement expressing regret over the practice of some schools conducting summer lessons shortly after the closure of schools on 21st July 2023. The Ministry has emphasized that such actions are unacceptable and stand in violation of the education policy.
In the official statement, the Ministry urged all school owners and administrators, whether in public or private institutions, to refrain from engaging in this malpractice for the following reasons:
The Ministry highlighted that learners require adequate time to rest and rejuvenate themselves after an intense academic session. By forcing them to attend summer lessons immediately after school closure, students are deprived of the opportunity to recharge, hindering their ability to begin the new term with renewed energy and enthusiasm.
Engaging in summer lessons creates a disparity between learners, especially those from vulnerable families. Not all parents or guardians can afford to pay for these additional classes, which ultimately results in unequal access to educational resources and opportunities. The Ministry firmly believes that all learners should have an equal chance to succeed, regardless of their financial background.
The Ministry expressed concern that some teachers may deliberately fail to complete the planned curriculum within the designated school calendar, with the intention of offering summer lessons to cover the remaining material. This practice undermines the efficiency and effectiveness of the regular academic schedule.
To address this issue, the Ministry declared that it will not tolerate any school found engaging in the premature commencement of summer lessons. Schools disregarding the official policy risk facing disciplinary actions by the Ministry.
Furthermore, the Ministry reiterated that the 2023/2024 academic calendar is scheduled to begin on 11th September 2023. All schools are expected to adhere to this timeline and operate within the designated academic year.
The Ministry’s Public Relations Officer, Mphatso Nkuonera, emphasized the importance of upholding the education policy to promote a fair and balanced learning environment for all students. Nkuonera urged school administrators, teachers, and parents to work together to support the academic success and well-being of the learners.
As the Ministry of Education remains committed to providing quality education to all Zambian students, they call on all stakeholders to abide by the regulations set forth and ensure a conducive learning experience for every child.