Graduates battle as govt fails to pay colleges

A number of teachers who have graduated from colleges under the government’s cadetship programme are battling to get their certificates because government has not paid their fees. Despite having qualified, they are employed only on a temporary basis and their salaries are equivalent to those of an untrained teacher.

Minister, Higher and Tertiary Education, Stan Mudenge
Minister, Higher and Tertiary Education, Stan Mudenge

“I finished my diploma in teaching at the United College of Education in Bulawayo last April.

The college says it will only give me my certificate if the government clears the outstanding fees of $1000 or I pay myself,” said a former student who is now employed as a temporarily teacher at Mzilikazi High.

Temporary teachers earn $200 whilequalified teachers earn between $300 to $400 depending on one‘s grade.

Another graduand from Hillside college in Bulawayo said he has been a temporary teacher for two years. “The college is withholding my results. With my low salary I cannot afford to repay the fees which they are demanding from me. I joined the government‘s cadetship programme because my parents could not afford by tuition fees. I do not know what to do,” he said.

Last year 33 568 students were on the programme out of a student population of 75 000 and only $7 million was paid to tertiary institutions while $15 million remained outstanding.

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