Sukulwenkosi Dube-Matutu, chronic journalist
THE Ministry of Primary and Secondary Education has opened an online application platform for Form 1 2022 boarding places.
Schools are expected to close this Friday and reopen for the first term of next year on January 11.
Despite a spike in Covid-19 cases, national public examinations are proceeding as planned. The increase in cases, however, has left parents and learners wondering if schools will open on the date set next year.
Since last year, the government has made significant progress in providing a safe environment for students to learn and take exams amid growing cases of Covid-19 in communities. Some schools have been forced to suspend classes after registering cases of Covid-19 when exams went as planned.
In a statement, the permanent secretary of the Ministry of Primary and Secondary Education, Ms. Tumisang Thabela, said that registrations which start today will close on January 31. She said learners would be allowed a maximum of five applications at any one time.
“The Ministry of Primary and Secondary Education will maintain an electronic platform for the registration of Form One boarding schools for 2022. Parents / guardians who wish to send their children to boarding schools are advised to start applying through the platform. -form (www.emap.co. zw) with effect from December 13, 2021 to January 31, 2022, ”Ms. Thabela said.
“All applicants will be allowed to make a maximum of five active applications at any one time. An applicant who has been offered a place in one school will not be able to apply or be considered for a place in another school unless the offer is declined. Successful candidates will be informed by means of a short message service (sms) by the respective school heads. Parents / guardians are however informed of the limited number of places in boarding.
She said that by applying to a school, an applicant will receive a response that will indicate that the application is pending, accepted, processed or rejected.
Ms Thabela said if parents or guardians decline an offer, there will be no guarantee of getting the same offer back. She said that the allocation of places will be random among the shortlisted schools.
This year, schools were due to open in early January for the first term, but ended up reopening in March due to the threat caused by the pandemic. Schools then closed on June 4 and were scheduled to reopen on June 28, but the reopening was postponed.
Schools were finally reopened on August 30 for exam classes and September 6 for the rest of the classes.
Due to the pandemic, school holidays have been extended, leaving learners with limited time to take face-to-face lessons with their teachers. Schools rely more on virtual lessons and radio lessons to which some learners do not have access.
The Ministry of Education has put in place remedial strategies to update learners. This includes blended learning and the teachers have combined some topics and also target some key topics in order to compress the curriculum and online learning. – @DubeMatutu