CHILDREN IN CLASSROOM BONUS.
Children of Chisenga community in Petauke District have something to be excited about. They have two classroom blocks that are being constructed for them by the community.
Chisenga community's Nyampande Primary School had challenges of low enrolment because of inadequate classrooms blocks. The school only enroled children between 8 to 9 years old instead of the required 7 years. This had primarily been because the children had to wait for two years before getting erolled into grade one due to inadequate space. This led some children into wrong vices like early marriages, cattle herding and substance control in order to keep themselves busy.
After analysing the situation, Save the Children came to the rescue of the school by supporting the construction of two school blocks. The support was rendered through the Community Led Child Rights Monitoring Committees which were formed to uplift the rights of every child in the community. After being trained, the team engaged the school authorities and the District Education Board Secretary Office (DEBS) to discuss possibilities of addressing this issue.
Through this engagement, the government duty bearers pledged to consider allocating some resources towards the construction of more classrooms. However, the committee decided to be proactive and called on each community household to contribute K30.00 (3 dollars) for the construction of two 10 by 20 meter classroom blocks. Today, the community is highly expectant that they will have normal enrolment next year because of the tremendous progress that has been under taken so far.
Nyampande Primary school head teacher Leonard Mapota says the efforts by Save the Children and Zambia Civic Education Association should be commended.
“We now have overwhelming demand for education. The committee has sensitised people in the community on the value of education. The construction of the new classrooms will surely manage the enrolment challenge” says Mapota.
More about the community led Child Rights monitoring committees.
The Community Led Child Rights Monitoring Committees were formed in 2016 as an initiative by Save the Children to uphold children’s rights in rural areas. SC and ZCEA have been undertaking monitoring visits in order to facilitate the community monitoring teams’ with skills to sharpen their data collection, information dissemination sharing of their findings and measuring progress, challenges and achievements.
The trained children and adults in the community monitoring teams have been developing plans with specific child rights to focus on as well as clear targets in terms of numbers of households, villages and children to reach. formed in 2016 as an initiative by Save the Children to uphold children’s rights in rural areas.