By Leopold Munhende
PARENTS, worried that their idle children might have ended up engaging in crimes or becoming victims of social ills, have welcomed the decision by government to send them back to school.
Speaking to NewZimbabwe.com as they bade their children farewell at a pickup point in Harare Monday, some parents said although they were not adequately prepared, the decision was necessary.
“We are actually quite happy that schools are now opening, they have been lying idle and this leads to misdemeanors,” said one parent.
“Even if we were not thoroughly prepared we are quite happy that they are going back to school. I have two daughters and welcome this decision especially in light of rising cases of child pregnancies and thank God they were not victims.”
Government last week announced Monday as opening day for examination classes only with the rest opening on the 6th of September.
They had been closed since July when the Covid-19 third wave hit Zimbabwe hard.
Another parent questioned whether schools were ready for students, in light of Covid-19 and the long period in which they were not operational.
“We are happy they are going to school because if we continue staying with them at home they become a danger by engaging in activities that are not good for them or society,” said another parent.
“It was not easy sending children back to school, some parents were not prepared. This however boiled down to the orderliness of parents as it was common knowledge that the decision never lay in our hands but government so the orderly ones were always ready. Our worry however is whether the schools are ready to take care of our children,” the parent added.
One of the parents urged government to motivate teachers by hiking their wages as that was the only way to ensure pupils recover lost time.
Teahers unions such as the Amalgamated Rural Teachers Union of Zimbabwe (ARTUZ) and Progressive Teachers Union of Zimbabwe (PTUZ) have maintained their members are not ready for opening of schools.
They have argued government has not yet ensured their safety, hiked their salaries to US dollar era figures and will not endanger their lives following the directive.