'Teachers must reclaim their rightful place': Hanse-Himarwa

12 Apr 2015 16:00pm
OKAHANDJA, 12 APR (NAMPA) - Minister of Education, Arts and Culture Katrina Hanse-Himarwa says it is time for teachers to reclaim their rightful place in society and earn respect from communities for the difficult task they have at hand.
The newly appointed Minister of Education, Arts and Culture said this while speaking at the tenth anniversary celebration and fundraising event of the Five Rand Primary School at Okahandja on Saturday.
Hanse-Himarwa said teachers are entrusted with the huge task of “opening up the brains and moulding and grooming learners from a tender age until they become professionals”, and they should therefore be accorded respect.
“Sometimes we think teachers are loaded with petty responsibilities, but to be entrusted with somebody's future, to open up their brains, mould and groom somebody is not an easy task, and I think it is about time that teachers reclaim their positions,” she stressed.
She said authorities must also accord respect and honour, and give them decent salaries and benefits.
The minister noted that teachers must be treated as professionals, saying “gone should be the days when teaching was a dumping site of any person who failed to make it elsewhere and end up in teaching”.
“That must come to an end, we will look into that because we want our teachers to be professionals in their conduct and dealings wherever they are, and when we want them to be professionals, we must give them what professionals are getting in life,” she said.
Hanse-Himarwa further called on principals and school communities to be innovative and creative in raising funds for their schools since the resources and funds provided by her ministry are not enough.
Although primary education is free in Namibia, communities must play their part in sustaining the schools voluntarily, she said.
According to the minister, the country has moved into an era where the nation is called upon to work together for the speedy delivery of prosperity for all Namibians.
Hanse-Himarwa therefore called on teachers to be enthusiastic and active, and to deliver their task with speed. The minister said no learner should show up for a class to be taught only to find that there is no one to teach them, adding that learners should always know that productive teaching will take place in class.
There are currently 590 learners at Five Rand Primary School.
Hanse-Himarwa called on kind-hearted Namibians and foreign nationals to assist in the construction of an administration office, additional classrooms, a sick room, and counselling room for the school, as well as to assist with plans to move the school into junior secondary phase.
Speaking at the same celebration was the patron of that school, Attorney General Sacky Shanghala, who announced that he will start up a N.dollars 20 000 trust fund. This will be used to support needy children who excel in their school work.