Govt heeds distress calls by parents, allows students to remain in school during holidays if they wish


Government has heeded to the call by some parents with pupils in boarding schools to allow their children to remain in schools during the one week holiday.

In a letter dated April 15, 2024 directed to all Provincial Education Officers, Ministry of Education Permanent Secretary (Education Services), Joel Kamoko, said such pupils whose parents wish to remain should be allowed to remain in schools.

Kamoko said Schools should, however, engage their parents for the top up on boarding fees for the period they would remain in school.

“On the other hand, no learner should be forced to remain in school during the holiday if they wish to go home for the holiday,” he advised

Kamoko instructed Headteachers to ensure that learners remaining in school are kept constructively engaged and learner’s safety guards are not dropped.

He advised that learner accountability systems during this period should be very efficient to ensure that every learner was accounted for at every particular time.

“Term one school holiday will only run for one week from Saturday, April 27, 2024 to Sunday May 5, 2024,” Kamoko guided.

Read More: Parents decry short school holidays, plead for extension claiming logistics nightmares, paucity of funds

On Tuesday April 17, 2024, Zambia Monitor reported that some parents had appealed to government to make an exceptional decision and allow pupils to remain in schools during the one week holiday

The parents contended that it did not make sense for their children to spend two days travelling and three days at home before starting to pack to go back to school.

In a heated whatsapp group chat, the parents stated that there were scenarios where pupils came from far places and that it took two days to connect to the final destination.

The parents believed that a lot of costs can be avoided if the policy makers could review the one week holiday which was too short and inconveniencing to some pupils and families.

“For a Mporokoso pupil at Hillcrest, how much is transport from Livingstone to Mporokoso by two, then we add Term two school fees that should be paid before the one week elapses, plus groceries needed for the term,” they lamented.

The Parents said the stress on pupils and financial pressure on them all in one week was unbearable, especially that there was paucity of funds in the economy.

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