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Education in Underfunded Zimbabwean Societies

By Charlene Tariro Murima, VI Form

Education in Underfunded Zimbabwean Societies

Editor’s Note: This project was made possible with the support of the Class of 1968 V Form Fellowship. At their 25th reunion, the Class of 1968 created a fund to provide grants to V Form students for independent study during the school year or, more commonly, during the summer between V and VI Forms. Their intent in establishing this fund was to reward independent thinking, ingenuity, and planning and to encourage the student exploring non-traditional fields of inquiry or using non-traditional methods of investigation.

Student-Submitted Note: To encourage a more globally-minded perspective and understanding of diverse educational practices, I received a grant through The Class of 1968 V Form Fellowship and traveled back to Zimbabwe during the summer of 2022. I conducted anonymous and in-person interviews. In these interviews were students and teachers informing me more about the country’s education system.

Student-Submitted Disclaimer: This article contains mentions of abortion and sexual abuse.

Over the summer of 2022, I traveled back to Zimbabwe to work on a documentary called Education in underfunded towns of Zimbabwe such as Dzivaresekwa, Concession, Mazowe, and Kuwadzana with the goal to educate my peers and schoolmates about some of the challenges students in Zimbabwe face. To make this study possible, I received a grant from the St. Mark’s Class of 1968 V Form Fellowship. I was able to visit many schools that lacked government funding or had limited resources, and I conducted anonymous and in-person interviews with students and teachers. I learned that the education system in Zimbabwe encompasses 7 years of primary school and 6 years of secondary school. It runs from January to December. The school year is a total of 3 terms with a one-month break, totaling 40 weeks per year. I asked a few students in person and anonymously online what they thought about the country’s education system and what they hope to change. Recurring themes of sparse resources and perpetual sexual abuse from those meant to educate them surfaced. 

An image showing students in different grades learning in one big room because there are not enough classrooms.