13 Mar 2014 20:50pm
WINDHOEK, 13 MAR (NAMPA) Nearly 25 000 learners have been enrolled for pre-primary education this year compared to 22 000 enrolled last year.
The Minister of Education, David Namwandi made this announcement on Thursday during the introduction of his ministry's budget to Parliament.
The minister said 24 659 learners have been enrolled for pre-primary education. He indicated that parents have realised the benefits of the pre-primary school phase and have noticed that children who attend pre-primary classes tend to succeed easily at primary education level and further education when compared to those who do not attend pre-primary school.
He further stated that free primary education at all Government schools, which was introduced last year, also drove more parents to enrol their children.
Namwandi said for the 2014/15 financial year, more than 35 000 learners are likely to be enrolled for primary education.
He indicated that this year, the Education Ministry has requested funding to the tune of N.dollars 339 248 749 for pre-primary compared to the N.dollars 312 819 177 allocated in the last financial year.
Funding will be utilised for the salaries of pre-primary teachers, the construction of pre-primary classes and for learning materials, he stated.
Namwandi stressed that Namibian children should be able to complete primary schooling, regardless of their socio-economic situations.
It is not enough for children to just be enrolled in school, but it is crucial that these children learn. Therefore, Government needs to ensure that there is a sufficient number of qualified teachers and classrooms, he said.
He also stated that phasing out fees at primary education level goes hand in hand with ensuring that schools are provided with all basic necessities.
Namwandi explained that during the last financial year, the ministry distributed N.dollars 135 million to schools for the purpose of ensuring that schools are provided with all the basic necessities, which benefited 449 243 learners.
The funds provided at school level were utilised for minor maintenance of school buildings, school excursions, photocopying of learners materials, and the purchase of stationery and other day-to-day school necessities, he explained.
He also told the House that 992 802 textbooks to the value of N.dollars 85 million for both primary and secondary education were purchased in the last financial year.