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Wenye divisheni ziro 30,000 wapeta

Dar es Salaam. Wanafunzi 30,063 waliopata daraja sifuri katika matokeo yaliyopita, wameula baada ya kupandishwa hadi daraja la nne kutokana na ukokotoaji upya wa matokeo ya mtihani wa kidato cha nne yaliyofanywa na Baraza la Mitihani la Taifa (Nacte) na kutangazwa jana.

Marekebisho hayo yalifanyika baada ya kufutwa kwa matokeo ya awali yaliyotangazwa Februari 18, mwaka huu.

Kufutwa kwa matokeo hayo, ilikuwa ni utekelezaji wa sehemu ya mapendekezo ya Tume iliyoundwa na Waziri Mkuu Mizengo Pinda, baada ya wanafunzi 240,909 kupata daraja sifuri kwenye matokeo yaliyotangazwa mara ya kwanza.

Akitangaza matokeo hayo jana, Waziri wa Elimu na Mafunzo ya Ufundi, Dk Shukuru Kawambwa alisema sasa watakaokuwa na sifuri ni 210,846 sawa na asilimia 56.92 wakati wavulana wakiwa ni 104,259 na wasichana 106,587.

Hiyo ina maana kuwa sasa ufaulu umepanda na kuwa asilimia 43.08 badala ya ule wa kwanza ambao ulikuwa asilimia 34.5.

Dk Kawambwa alisema kutokana na ukokotoaji mpya wa matokeo ya sasa, idadi ya wanafunzi waliofaulu mtihani huo kwa daraja la kwanza mpaka la nne imeongezeka na kufikia wanafunzi 159,747 kutoka 126,847.

Wanafunzi waliopata daraja la kwanza ni 3,242 wavulana wakiwa ni 2,179 na wasichana 1,063 ikiwa ni asilimia 0.88 ya matokeo yote, daraja la pili ni 10,355 sawa na asilimia 2.8 wavulana wakiwa 7,267 na wasichana 3,088.

Waliopata daraja la tatu ni 21,752 sawa na asilimia 5.87 wavulana wakiwa 14,979 na wasichana 6,773, daraja la nne ni 124,260 sawa na asilimia 33.54 .

Tofauti na matokeo yaliyofutwa, ambayo watahiniwa waliopata daraja la kwanza walikuwa ni 1,641, wavulana wakiwa 1,073 na wasichana 568, daraja la pili ni 6,453, wavulana wakiwa 4,456 na wasichana 1997.

Waliopata daraja la tatu walikuwa 15,426, wavulana 10,813 na wasichana 4,613, waliopata daraja la nne 103,327, wavulana 64,344 na wasichana 38,983 huku waliopata sifuri wakiwa 240,903, wavulana 120,664 na wasichana 120,239.

Dk Kawambwa alieleza watahiniwa waliosajiliwa kufanya mtihani huo walikuwa ni 480,029 na waliofanya ni 458,139 sawa na asilimia 95.44.

Alisema kuwa watahiniwa wa shule waliosajiliwa kufanya mtihani huo walikuwa ni 411,225 na waliofanya ni 397,138 sawa na asilimia 96.57 huku wa kujitegemea wakiwa ni 68,804 na waliofanya ni 61,001.


Scientists explore the inner workings of the teenage brain

New research by scientists at           "As we age, we all lose grey
the University of Cambridge           matter. However, what we 
suggests that chronic cocaine          have seen is that chronic
abuse accelerates the process          cocaine users lose grey
 of brain ageing.                               matter at a significantly
                                                         faster rate, which could
The       study      found      that        be a sign of premature    
 age-related loss of grey matter        ageing."
in the brain is greater in people       -Dr Karen Ersche
who are dependent on cocaine 
than in the healthy population.

For the study, the researchers scanned the brains of 120 people with similar age, gender and verbal IQ. Half of the individuals had a dependence on cocaine while the other 60 had no history of substance abuse disorders.

The researchers found that the rate of age-related grey matter volume loss in cocaine-dependent individuals was significantly greater than in healthy volunteers.

 The cocaine users lost about 
3.08 ml brain volume per 
year, which is almost twice 
the rate of healthy 
volunteers (who only lost 
about 1.69 ml per year). 

The accelerated age-related decline in brain volume was most prominent in the prefrontal and temporal cortex, important regions of the brain which are associated with attention, decision-making, and self-regulation as well as memory.

Previous studies have shown that psychological and physiological changes typically associated with old age such as cognitive decline, brain atrophy and immunodeficiency are also seen in middle-aged cocaine-dependent individuals. 

However, this is the first time that premature ageing of the brain has been associated with chronic cocaine abuse.

Dr Karen Ersche, of the Behavioural and Clinical Neuroscience Institute (BCNI) at the University of Cambridge, said: 

“As we age, we all lose grey matter. 
However, what we have seen is that 
chronic cocaine users lose grey 
matter at a significantly faster rate, 
which could be a sign of premature 
ageing. Our findings therefore 
provide new insight into why the 
cognitive deficits typically seen in old 
age have frequently been observed in 
middle aged chronic users of cocaine.”

The scientists also highlight concerns that premature ageing in chronic cocaine users is an emerging public health concern. 

The United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime estimates that cocaine is used by up to 21 million individuals worldwide, with approximately 1 per cent of these individuals becoming dependent.

Dr Ersche said: 
“Our findings clearly highlight 
the need for preventative
 strategies to address the risk of 
premature ageing associated 
with cocaine abuse. Young 
people taking cocaine today 
need to be educated about the 
long-term risk of ageing 

The concern of accelerated ageing is not limited to young people but also affects older adults who have been abusing drugs such as cocaine since early adulthood.

Dr Ersche added: 
“Our findings shed light on the 
largely neglected problem of the
 growing number of older drug
 users, whose needs are not so 
well catered for in drug 
treatment services. It is timely
 for heath care providers to 
understand and recognise the 
needs of older drug users in
 order to design and 
administer age-appropriate

15 Tanzanians undergoing training in South Korea

Korean International Cooperation Agency (Koica)

Korean International Cooperation Agency (Koica) has invited 15 Tanzanian government officials to attend a three-week training programme on local administration management in South Korea.

According to a statement made available to The Guardian yesterday the training officially started on May 26 and ends on June 15, this year.

The statement said the country-specific fellowship programme is one of Koica’s training programmes to be carried out under the 2013 technical cooperation programme of the government of South Korea.

The trainees include Lawrence Mhelela, head of administration and personnel department from Kigoma Ujiji Municipal Council and Lucy Mzengi, monitoring and evaluation coordinator in the Prime Minister’s Office.

According to Koica Tanzania office, the course ie meant to enhance the exposure of Korea’s field management to the participants, its expected contribution, vision and strategy for the Tanzania’s local government and consolidate partnership between the two countries.

Korea through Koica has created and continued to strengthen a good relationship with Tanzania since 1992 through supporting government officials to go for training in the Asian country for the aim of helping them to learn through the Korean’s experiences in order to help Tanzania.

Statistics show that so far over 600 Tanzanian officials have participated in various courses in South Korea including Masters Degree programme, focusing on health, education, good governance, rural development and ICT since 1992. 


Kenyan woman starts primary education at 78

Nairobi. She is in Standard One against many odds: At 78 years, she is frail, and within a week, she has already skipped school for two days due to an illness. 

To make matters worse, she smokes.

Obambo Primary School in Siaya County admitted the “pupil” this term. Mrs Mariana Ong’ango Ololo, now the 87th pupil in the class, has left tongues wagging among residents of Yenga Village in Obambo Sub Location.

When Nation visited the school two weeks ago, Mrs Ololo was yet to be admitted, two days after she made her unannounced entry to the school on May 14.

She had arrived clad in a full school uniform, her head shaved clean and with a bag on her back. Her 56-year-old son George Ololo, who is an alumnus of the school, was accompanying her as the guardian.

 Mrs Ololo however, could not join class just yet. The school headmaster advised her not to get into class before teachers held a meeting to discuss how to deal with her.

“It is a unique case. We have to lay down a strategy of handling such an elderly pupil,” said Mr Joseph Mulo, the school head.

She was later admitted to class and attended lessons from Monday, May 20, through Thursday. She could not make it to school on Friday as she had fallen ill. 

Her illness persisted through the weekend, meaning that she couldn’t make it to class Tuesday. 

Mrs Ololo’s is a story of swimming against the tide.

 A mother of eight and a widow since 2002, she is one of the few women in her matrimonial home who have an unwavering interest in politics — the biggest reason behind her decision to join school.

Boundaries Are More Effective Than Rules

Rules certainly are familiar in a classroom setting.

 But there are simply too many places where the methods and dynamics of rule-making and enforcing just don’t fit in with my idea of win-win.

So what's the alternative? Is there a way for teachers to truly get what they want from their students without creating additional conflicts, resorting to traditional authoritarian power dynamics, or somehow compromising the emotional climate of the classroom?

 I've discovered that the promise of positive outcomes is less destructive than the threat of negative consequences. 

And I've found that the most successful teachers are those able to ask for what they want with clarity, assertiveness, and great respect for the needs, preferences, and dignity of their students.

In many classrooms, the rules are invariably negative. Often the rule itself is stated negatively: “No hitting,” “Don’t call out,” “Eating in class is prohibited.” 

However, even when the rule is stated positively (“Turn in work on time,” “Speak respectfully,” “Raise your hand to speak”), the result of an infraction is typically negative. In some instances, the punishments— often called “consequences”—are listed right along with the rules.

Rules and penalties depend on the students’ fear of the negative consequences.

 If the child is afraid of a bad grade, missing recess, or having her name written on the board (which for most kids, simply reinforces attention-getting behavior), she may do what you want, often at a cost to her emotional safety and to the general stress level in the class.

In contrast, boundaries do not depend on fear or power, other than the teacher’s power to allow a positive consequence to occur when the students have done their part. 

This positivity represents an important characteristic of a boundary, as well as a significant difference between boundaries and rules.

 As a management tool in a win-win setting, boundaries are always stated positively, as promises rather than threats. 

Likewise, boundaries offer a refreshing change from punishment-oriented strategies to a reward-oriented approach to behavior management. 

Boundaries allow us to think of consequences as the good things students get (or get to do) as a result of their cooperation, changing the prevailing connotation of the word “consequence” from negative to positive.

 In addition to being positive, boundaries support win-win power dynamics because they are themselves win-win. 

Even the most reasonable rules are oriented to the power needs of the adult, providing information for the students how not to “lose.” 

Rarely do rules communicate how students can “win” in any other, more positive way. 

Boundaries, on the other hand, take into consideration to the desires and needs of the students they attempt to motivate. 

Additionally, boundaries are proactive, attempting to prevent problems in positive ways. 

Rules typically focus on the negative or punitive reaction of the teacher (or the system) when a student gets caught. 

Both rules and boundaries can prevent misbehavior, but because with rules the payoff to students for compliance is simply avoiding a negative consequence, the process of enforcement becomes unavoidably reactive.

(This is why simply posting a bunch of rules, penalties, or punishments before kids misbehave is proactive only in forewarning of impending reactivity!)

With a boundary, a positive outcome simply does not happen unless the desired behavior occurs. 

The absence of the positive outcome— pending the student’s cooperation— is, in most cases, the only “teacher reaction” necessary.

The subtlety of the differences between boundaries and rules makes it easy to discount the impact each can have on the emotional climate in a classroom and the quality of the relationship between teachers and students.

 However, teachers who endeavor to shift from the win-lose familiarity of rules to the win-win prospects of boundaries report a significant decrease in conflicts and power struggles in their classes, and far greater success in reaching kids previously deemed difficult, unmotivated or, in some instances, even dangerous, than with any strategy previously attempted.

Six Tips for Helping Kids Follow Directions

It happens all the time. You deliver clear directions to a quiet classroom. 

Perhaps the instructions are about the homework that will be due tomorrow, or maybe it’s something as simple as asking them to write their names on the top of their papers.

But then half the class fails to do what you asked.

The disconnect between giving directions and students actually following them has long been a frustration of teachers.

 Thankfully, there are a few tricks that can help you get kids’ attention and keep it long enough to make sure those instructions sink in.

1. Call for complete silence. 

 Try standing at the front of the room and looking at students. Simply stand there. 

After a few moments, the conversations will quiet down as they look at you curiously, wondering why in the world you are looking at them that way. 

Once you have that attention, ask for silence, and for the most part, you will get it.

You might also try using hand signals to indicate that it’s time to quiet down.  

2. Cater to multiple intelligences. 

There will typically be some students who claim they never received verbal directions. 

Remedy that problem (and appeal to visual learners) by displaying the directions on your chalkboard, whiteboard or interactive whiteboard.

 In addition, ask students to write them in their agendas. If you have a class Web page, put the directions there as well.

 The Web method works especially well for students who paid attention to the directions but then simply misplaced them. 

Finally, you can try asking a student to repeat instructions you just delivered. 

The student’s oral expression will encourage deeper processing (and better memory), and the repetition will benefit classmates as well.

3. Break it up.  

If you are giving instructions that have more than one or two steps, make sure to break them down into manageable chunks.

 Just as you would set milestones and deadlines when dealing with a lengthy requirement, your students need your guidance to do the same. 

Pause between directions to make sure they have the opportunity to write them down or commit them to memory.

4. Make it a game. 

 Sometimes a little humor can get students’ attention.

 Play a classroom game by asking them to stand up. Once they have done it, tell them to sit down. 

Then ask them to stand up again. 

At this point, they will be very curious as to what you will ask of them next. 

When you have their full and undivided attention, ask them to sit down—then deliver your directions. 

At that point, they will do exactly what you want—and likely with smiles on their faces.

5. Be consistent. 

  Don’t give directions that are ambiguous or leave any wiggle room. 

Your instructions to students should be clear, concise and always consistent. 

Once students get into a particular routine—for instance, turning homework in at the beginning of class, every day, without exception—they’ll be more likely to follow through.

6. Watch your tone. 

 Your speaking tone matters.

 If you have to raise your voice above the din—or are even tempted to yell in frustration—you don’t stand a chance of most students actually hearing you.

 Maintaining composure is one of the most powerful classroom management strategies available.

Successful communication of directions is crucial to effective teaching. 

With time and perseverance, you can build students’ ability to tune into, and follow, instructions.

'Measures to be taken against those who failed Form IVs'

Magdalena Hamis Sakaya (Special Seats, CUF)

The Prime Minister, Mizengo Pinda, yesterday told the National Assembly that the government will take severe measures against those involved in last year’s Form IV exam failures once the probe team completes its work.

Pinda made the clarification when responding to a question raised by Magdalena Hamis Sakaya (Special Seats, CUF) during the Prime Minister’s Questions and Answers session.

Sakaya had wanted to know if the government saw the need to hold those responsible for the students’ mass failures accountable, including the Minister for Education and Vocational Training Dr Shukuru Kawambwa.

“After the investigations are complete, we will get answers and if we happen to discover that there were individuals responsible for the shameful action, the government will not hesitate to hold them accountable,” the Prime Minister said.

8th Exhibition of Higher Education Science & Technology 22-24 may 2013.

Opportunity Education joins hands in changing learning environment

Poor student performance in the national examinations in the past years has been of great concern to many Tanzanian, who are dedicated to promote the learning process.

With this in mind, a local Non Governmental Organization set up activity in 2006 with the aim of improving education for Tanzanian children.

Opportunity Education, decided to joining hands with the government to change this sad trend.

This year, the NGO has donated laptop computers embedded with 450 video lessons and television screens to a number of schools. According to the NGO, the aim is to ensure school teachers have access to the curriculum on their laptops, while students follow the lessons as projected on TV screens.

"We have realized that both primary and secondary school students will benefit a lot from our materials, as they face more or less the sane problems", said Mbaki Mutahaba, Opportunity Education Tanzania Field Manager.

Lessons provided using the laptops have great use of videos that help engage students and create focus for the lessons. This is one of the learning principles of Opportunity Education, it makes learning a fun process.

"Information and Communication Technology (ICT) is very important in today's world, not only does it expose the students, but more importantly, it can help build a foundation in their future education " insists Mr Mbaki.

The fact is, the government alone cannot supply all schools with education materials. Support from various organizations would help jerk up government's premeditated efforts. Opportunity Education has shown interest to join other education stakeholders in a bid to improve the learning environment for students.

The NGO has invested in the education sector by providing education materials to teachers and students all over the country. Currently, over 360 primary and secondary schools have benefited from the organization's support.

Through this initiative, the firm has been able to record a number of successes, such as increased enrollment and improved attendance due to the exciting learning methods provided. Some of the secondary schools that have benefited from the NGO supports include Pugu, Tusiime, St Joseph Millennium, Montfort, St Anne and Freys Luis, all from Dar es Salaam.

"The aim is to spread our service further to rural schools. However, due to financial constraints, we will need more time and patience", says Mr Mutahaba. In the case of primary schools, Opportunity Education has managed to take its support to Karume English Medium primary school in Bukoba.

The support according to the school's head teacher, Mr Seif Mkunde has greatly improved in performance. For instance, the school emerged as number one of 968 schools in Kagera Region and was 6th in the country out of 15,059 schools in the 2012 exams.

"Opportunity Education program support has given us a very big advantage to improve the standard of education at our school, region and country at large", says Mr Mkunde. One of the teachers from the supported schools, Sr Linda Jerald from ST Anne Primary School says the education materials offered by Opportunity Education are extremely helpful in teaching.

"Today we can see clearly the difference in the performance of students after using the computers. We thank the Opportunity Education's materials in the teaching methods. The methodology and visual ability help students grasp concepts faster than reading the notes," Sister Linda explained.

Mr Mbaki appeals to all needy schools across the country that need to benefit from organization's education support to apply through their website, www.

He said that education sector in the country faces a number of problems that cannot be addressed amicably without joint efforts from all players in the sector including government and other stakeholders.

"As an NGO, we can't cover everything, that is why we are playing our part in improving education, thus , the government has its role, as well as other NGO's and stakeholders, " insisted Mr Mbaki.

On their future plans,besides extending wings to rural areas, Mr Mbaki said that the NGO plan of supplying mini laptops to students, loaded with powerful digital lessons, plans that would replace the current educational materials, will not only see students in Tanzania access better education but also embrace ICT in their studies.

Ms Philomena Temu, a former Education Officer with Ministry of Education, says Opportunity Education tools are among imperative steps meant for improving learning in Tanzania schools. "Many schools lack books, and have very few teachers, so these tools although they are not replacement for teachers they will really curb the situation," says Ms Temu.

Ms Temu says even in schools with enough teachers, Opportunity Education tools to be used to compliment what the teachers are teaching. With future plans of supplying tablets to students, loaded with powerful digital lessons, Opportunity Education's  mission is to see that students access better education through technology and embrace ICT in their studies.

Aspects among others, stipulated by many people hint at relevance of the curriculum, the syllabus, learning environment starting from primary and secondary schools, students' seriousness in their studies, availability of teaching facilities at all levels and the degree of comfort among the school teachers.

One of the students who failed, Joash Lameck a product of ward secondary school-Bukura in Mara region noted that nothing was expected from the result for they lacked all requirements that would have led them to success.

"We have few teachers but all are incompetent as we heard that some of them were just form six dropouts, what do you expect from such a teacher? The school goes without modern library and laboratory, it is thereafter hard to pass under this situation , " he said.    

Exam fiasco: Report says govt to blame

Twaweza Programme Officer Elvis Mushi briefs journalists in Dar es Salaam yesterday on the findings of a survey carried out after the results of last year’s national Form Four examination results were released. With him is Twaweza official Constantine Manda. PHOTO | SALIM SHAO

Dar es Salaam. The government is still on the spotlight over massive failure in last year’s Form Four examinations, even as the State burns the midnight oil to release revised results after nullifying them and ordering the National Examination Council of Tanzania (Necta) to standardise them using the 2011 rating system.

A lobby group conducted a countrywide survey, which involved parents, barely a month after the results were released, and concluded in its findings that the government and teachers were to blame.

Announcing research findings in Dar es Salaam yesterday, Twaweza researcher Elvis Mushi said the survey - conducted from March 14 to April 3 this year - involved 2,000 respondents (parents) from across the country.

According to him, the research dubbed ‘Sauti za Wananchi’ (voices of citizens) which involved telephone interviews after parents were given mobile phones to facilitate the survey outlined ten key issues.

The survey indicated that 68 per cent of the respondents were aware of the publication of 2012 Form Four exam results while 32 per cent had no idea about them at all. 

Majority of the respondents also said there was an alarming and deteriorating quality of secondary school education in the country.
Other things that the research revealed included the absence of textbooks and that teachers were not attending classes.

 It noted that when they did, the teachers were likely to give assignments and walk out of classes immediately without teaching.

Asked if parents took time to help their children in the course of pursuing their studies, especially after leaving school, respondents were of the view that on average parents made an effort to help their children’s learning.

The students learning assessment, included in the Sauti za Wananchi findings, further indicated that Mathematics and English competence levels were disturbingly low, confirming the national examination results.

The survey by Twaweza concludes that more than 70 per cent of respondents said that the major cause of high exam failures was a shortage of teachers. 

Thus they asked the government to reduce pressure on educators. The parents also cited qualifications of teachers as another big problem, calling for the government to motivate the instructors in order to increase efficiency.

“Through Sauti za Wananchi, we are able to quickly and scientifically hear the views of the citizens on issues that impact their lives,” said head of Twaweza, Mr Rakesh Rajani.

He said from the parents’ perspective it was clear that motivating and holding teachers to account was key to improving education in the country.

Aga Khan University opens new health centre in Arusha

The Aga Khan University (AKU) recently opened a modern health centre in Arusha that is tasked with offering high quality services an objective strongly seconded by local government officials in the region.

First in line is the Arusha Regional Commissioner, Magesa Mulongo, who asserted that the opening of the modern health centre will enable residents in the city and beyond access world class care.

The centre is poised to offer among other services, physician consultations and a wide range of diagnostic services including CT scanning, ultra sound as well as avail a modern laboratory and pharmacy.

RC Mulongo made the remarks during the recent launch of the centre where he noted that the Aga Khan Health Clinic will offer much needed services and bench mark quality health care in the region.

AKU is also planning to establish a principal campus site in the region where they are expected to build a hospital to provide specialised and critical care at international standards.

“The hospital will enable the residents of Arusha and beyond access World class care,” the RC said.

Mulongo commended Chancellor of the Aga Khan University for his immense contribution to the development of education and healthcare in the region and beyond.

"The substantial investment by Aga Khan University in Arusha will help create new jobs, increase economic activity and rise educational opportunities in the region," the RC predicted.

In his welcoming remarks, AKU president Firoz Rasul said that the Arusha campus will be a new community with a vibrant education culture that will nurture the region’s future leadership.

According to Rasul, the project will involve the development of academic and research facilities as well as student residences and amenities, a library, student centre, auditorium, sports facilities, housing and amenities for faculty and staff and of course the new hospital.

Currently the Aga Khan University is working with the Regional and District Commissioners on a Regional Plan to improve the infrastructure of the Arusha Region, including roads, water management, community facilities and public amenities.

AKU is also cooperating with the Nelson Mandela African Institute of Science and Technology to develop the Arusha region as a higher education hub for East Africa.

Emphasising on AKU’s long term commitment to the region, Rasul said that the University plans to invest over USD 1bn/- towards establishing its campuses throughout the region adding more than 10,000 new jobs to the current 2000 already working for the Aga Khan University in East Africa. 


TCU ban on courses irks varsity

Dar es Salaam. Kampala International University (KIU), Dar es Salaam Constituent College, has reacted strongly against the Tanzania Commission for Universities (TCU) move to ban it from offering Masters and Doctorate courses.

TCU last week said it would not recognise Masters and Doctorate degrees from KIU because the institution had not met the required criteria.

In an interview soon after the disqualification, the director of Academic Affairs at KIU, Dr Rutaro Abas, said the commission’s decision came too early because the university was still under a two-month interim period it was given by TCU to work on weaknesses before effectively starting to offer fulltime courses for Masters and Doctorate degrees.  

“We met earlier with TCU and reached a gentleman’s we just wonder why TCU went to the media with the matter,” Dr Abas said. 

However, in a quick rejoinder, TCU spokesperson Edward Mkaku turned down KIU’s defence, saying the commission had communicated with the university since July, last year, and directed it to fix the weaknesses but nothing was done.

Mr Mkaku said last July TCU provided a three-month interim period for KIU to sort out the flaws, but since there was no development, the commission added more time which ran up to January this year, but the university did not solve the weaknesses.

“What followed was giving them a three-month ultimatum requiring them to suspend those courses until the institutions abides by the directives,” he said. 

After the end of the ultimatum period, now TCU has moved to issue a ban on Masters and Doctorate degree courses at the campus, he said.

Giving details on the matter, Dr Abas said KIU applied for accreditation from the TCU to offer 9 courses for Masters and 5 for Doctorate degrees. 

On April 12, this year, TCU wrote to the university in response to the latter’s application, noting that it did not qualify to offer such courses since it lacked enough staff to do so.

Once KIU received the letter of disapproval, according to Dr Abas, the management went to meet TCU for talks in which the two parties reached a ‘gentleman’s agreement.’

Debate rages on use of the cane in schools

Public opinion remains sharply divided on whether to reintroduce corporal punishment in schools, particularly following the massive failures in last year’s national Form IV examinations.

Those in support of the government’s decision argue that applying strokes of the cane will make students more disciplined and more attentive to their teachers, thus enhancing their performance in exams and studies in general.

The argument on the contrary is that ‘discipline’ resulting from beating can only be fear resulting from terror and would make students less attentive and more likely to do ever worse in their studies.

Miriam John, a parent based in Dar es Salaam, said she supports the use of corporal punishment “because I am sure most students will reform for fear of disgracing themselves if caned before the very eyes of the schoolmates”.

“When the government banned corporal punishment, there was a rise in the prevalence of misbehaviour among students, leading to a drop in attendance, academic performance and discipline generally,” she said.

Ramadhani Justine, a student at St Mathews Secondary School in the city, meanwhile described the use of the cane as “one of the most effective ways of shaping students’ discipline and general conduct”.

He added that if they are not beaten, students will have contempt and arrogance against the teachers. However, he warned that it was important for the punishment to be “regulated” – including setting the maximum number of strokes of the cane to be administered. 

Digna Peter, a teacher in Kilimanjaro Region, also recommended corporal punishment as the appropriate way to change students’ behaviour.

She said it was “the only punishment we know that can scare students into good behaviour”.

She said banning the punishment would leave students free to conduct themselves as they please because they will be assured that they would go unpunished.

“Teachers are guardians of students and they would normally not the cane as a way of harassing or mistreating the students, but only to effectively prepare an ethical generation for the future,” she noted.

Argues Megan Randall, a former US volunteer who taught in a local school for three years, differs.

She believes corporal punishment affects students negatively, adding: “It reduces their self-esteem and overall confidence to succeed. It causes physical pain and emotional, long-lasting scarring.”

“On the whole, it motivates students to fear learning, to abhor their teachers and be dreadful of failing,” she intimated to this paper in a recent interview.

She advised that learning out of fear is never as healthy or successful as doing so “out of a realistic and encouraged ability to succeed”.

Instead, she in support of positive encouragement, role modeling and learning environments in which students are told “you can do it”. 

Beatings to augment students’ performance are wrong and misguided “because it is a reactive strategy to their failing rather than a proactive way to encourage them to learn and succeed”, she notes.

According to her, beating doesn’t teach or show students what to do to succeed or clarify what they should have known for a test, “but merely highlights how they shouldn’t behave and that they did something wrong”.

A Dar es Salaam-based philosophy don who preferred anonymity said children learn from whatever adults do and whatever happens in society, and beating seldom induces positive change in their behaviour but can only breed resentment and anger.

A recent global study by Plan International, revealed that many children abandoned school because of punishments, which include hitting pupils with hands or sticks, making them stand in various positions for long periods and even tying them to chairs. 

Out of 13 countries which were the subjects of the research, India was ranked third in terms of the estimated economic cost of corporal punishment.

Plan reckons that between $1.4bn and $7.4bn was being lost every year in India in social benefits because of school violence.

The cost is based on estimates of how the larger economy is affected by the impact of corporal punishment on pupils' attendance and academic performance.

Children have the right to protection from all forms of violence, abuse and maltreatment. Corporal punishment in any setting is a violation of that right.

Physical and other forms of humiliating and abusive treatment are not only a violation of the child’s right to protection from violence, but also counter-productive to learning, the study says.

“Corporal punishment in all settings wherever the child is, should be banned through legislation, in line with the recommendations in the UN study on violence against Children. 

Any form of violence against children is never justifiable or acceptable. It teaches the child that violence is acceptable and so perpetuates the cycle of violence, the study says.

Karin Hulshof a UNICEF Representative says: “Eliminating corporal punishment in all settings is also a key strategy for reducing and preventing all forms of violence in society."

Last month the government said it was contemplating reintroducing corporal punishment in schools in a move meant to enhance discipline.

Education and Vocational Training deputy minister Philip Mulugo said the scraping of corporal punishment in schools had resulted in misbehaviour by many students and hence the massive failures in last year’s Form Four exams.

But Randall argues that corporal punishment, though not bad, shouldn’t be used as the first punishment for minor mistakes.

“Even though corporal punishment was illegal during the time when I was a teacher in Tanzania, it was still the most popular method of chastisement and widely used by all teachers and administration in schools,” 

she noted, adding: “Hence, obviously, even though corporal punishment was being used, it clearly didn’t do anything positive to ensure students’ high performance on their tests.” 



The government and British are embarking on an ambitious project on English Language improvement to help address education quality in primary and secondary schools.

The ministry of Education and Vocational Training, the British Council, the Volunteer Service Organization (VSO) and the UK Department for International Development (DFID) have pledged to develop the project.

The four year project, titled Education Quality Improvement Project Tanzania: English Language Teaching (EQUIPT ELT), will be achieved through developing capacity of tutors in government Teachers Training Colleges and Student teacher to communication in English and extend their teaching capability to teach.

Launching the project in Dar es salaam yesterday, the Minister for Education and Vocatonal Training, Dr Shukuru Kawambwa, said challenges facing teaching and learning of English Language include low teachers' mastery of the language, which poses communication difficulties and limited classroom interaction.

Dr Kawambwa explained that the current global development demands have made English Language a crucial tool for communication in the world, making it necessary for government to find ways to help the young generation master the language.

He said teachers have been earmarked as central in ensuring the success of government's initiative of 'Big Results Now' in the education sector. The project will be implemented in 34 public teacher training colleges for four years, starting November 2012.

The minister explained that the target group that will benefit from the project include more than 35,000 pupils and students from primary and secondary schools, 70,000 teacher trainees, 1,650 tutors, 510 head of professions and 220 school inspectors. The Millennium Development Goal Leader, Ms Liz Tayler, commended the high enrollment in schools but also noted the government's frustration over the falling quality of education.

"For this reason, we are supplementing our support to the education budget with projects in focused areas that are likely to make a real difference and this project will do this," she explained, adding that it will support all public teachers training institutions to improve English Language.

Ms Tayler noted that currently, UK contributes 120bn/- to the general budget and 63bn/- to education specifically, estimating that over 400,000 children are supported through schools. The Commissioner for Education in Tanzania, Prof Eustella Bhalalusesa, said the projects targets at improving the capacity of teacher educators and student teachers with specific focus on English as the medium of instruction.

"In this, the emphasis will be on developing English language communication skills so as to build mastery and confidence in the use of the language," Prof Bhalalusesa explained. 

Charity donates over 250 desks to Mwanza schools

Over 800 pupils in five districts of Mwanza Region have benefited from 250 desks donated by Hassan Maajar Trust, a civic organisation committed to boosting the education sector in the country.

Districts set to benefit from the donation, estimated to cost about Sh20 million, include Misungwi, Kwimba, Sengerema, Ukerewe and Magu, according to the trust’s vice chairman, Mr Sharif Maajar.

Speaking during the official handing over of the donation at Nyamijundu Village, Misungwi District, whose schools received 50 desks, Mwanza Regional commissioner, Mr Evarist Ndikilo, thanked the organisation for the support.

“Students in Mwanza, particularly those living in the rural settings, are often faced with many challenges and number one is that of poor learning environment. 

So, we really appreciate partners who assist in creating better learning environment for our children,” said Mr Ndikilo when he addressed a crowd of residents, pupils, teachers and district commissioners from districts that benefited from the donation.

As Mr Ndikilo put it, overcoming some of these challenges by creating a conducive learning environment, would set standards and encourage better results.

Mwanza donation was the third of five by the same organisation. Funds spent on buying the desks were raised by the Hassan Maajar Trust at a gala in December, 2011. 

(By The Citizen Reporter)

Civic bodies decry Form IV exam results nullification

Argue that standardisation will lead to generation of illiterate leaders, 'specialists'

Civic organisations in the country yesterday vehemently criticised government’s decision to nullify 2012 Form Four national examination results, arguing that the grading system used wasn’t the key factor leading to students’ mass failure.

The organisations asked the report on the findings and recommendations of the select National Commission of Inquiry into the 2012 Students’ Failure be made public.

The civic bodies group Hakielimu, Policy Forum, Sikika, Tanzania Education Society (TenMet) and the Tanzania Gender Network Program (TGNP).

Reading a joint statement HakiElimu Executive Director Elizabeth Missokia said that the standardisation of the results will lead to generation of illiterate leaders and specialists.

She said that the use of the new grading system should not be considered as the only factor behind the students’ failure because there were many other factors which have been pointed out since 2009.

“Apart from the new grading system there are a lot of weaknesses in the education sector and the public education system which for several years have been repeatedly pointed out by civic societies, educationists, activists and other stakeholders but the government has taken no measures to redress the situation,” Missokia said.

She pointed out some of the weaknesses as lack of enough qualified teachers, especially for science subjects, poor motivation of the available teachers in public schools, limited understanding of the requirements of the 2005 competence based curriculum and syllabus, which is currently in use.

Most public schools, she said, are operating without enough teaching and learning materials such as text books and science laboratory equipment.

Another drawback is the use of English language as the medium of instruction in secondary schools, which is not adequately mastered by both teachers and students.

The HakiElimu head stressed that the long time weaknesses in the education sector led to mass failures which have been noticed since 2009 when 27.5 percent of the candidates scored Division Zero, while in year 2010 the number increased to 49.6 percent.

 In year 2011 the number slightly improved to 46.4 percent before it tumbled to 60.5 percent last year.

Missokia said between 2009 and 2011, 86.9 percent of all candidates who sat for the Form Four exams in the country scored between Divisions Four and Zero.

“By simply nullifying the last year’s results without allowing public discussion of the report, the government seems to be suggesting that if there are any other factors behind the poor results, then they are not as significant as the issue of the grading system,” she explained.

Policy Forum Manager Alex Modest said that he was wondering why the government took the urgent decision while there was a commission which was supposed to bring the recommendations and the actual reasons for the failures.

He said that the standardisation of the results in order to increase the number of successful students isn’t the permanent solution as the effects will still exist in the future when the students join higher-learning institutions.

Japhet Makongo, one of the HakiElimu founders, said that children need a strong foundation of education for their future lives.

He said the current education system has been turned to a drama which will endanger the lives of future generations.

The Coordinator of the Tanzania Education Network (Ten/Met) Cathleen Sekwao said according to most of her researches on the poor performance in secondary schools, the use of English language was one among the main factors leading to students’ failure.

She urged the government to ensure a smooth transition of language from the primary to secondary level to make students understand what is taught in class.

Last week the government announced the nullification of last year’s Form Four exam results attributing the students’ mass failure to the new grading system by the state-run National Examinations Council of Tanzania (NECTA).

A commission formed by Prime Minister Mizengo Pinda established that NECTA had used a new grading system that led to the mass failures. 


Maasai advised to sell their herds to educate children

 Joshua Nassari MP (Arumeru-East, Chamdema)

The Masaai community has been advised to sell part of their livestock in order to send their children to school.

The move which would enable them to acquire knowledge and benefit from the country’s expanding socio-economic opportunities.

The advice was given by Joshua Nassari MP (Arumeru-East, Chamdema) at a fundraising function meant to raise money to construct a secondary school at Ngabobo area through the Pamoja project.

Nassari said the community has have been left behind in the spheres of development because they lack education for many years.

And as a result of their nomadic herding system and traditional way of life they have also denied their children a chance to get education.

"I call upon the Maasai people to start investing in education for the benefit of their children, education is one of the most important assets in today’s world,” said Nassari.

He applauded them for their efforts in contributing for the construction of the new school, by selling some of their livestock in a move to enable construction of the school to be possible.

He told the pastoralists that their community was lucky of producing leaders with integrity and hardwork such as former Prime Minister Edward Lowassa and the late Edward Moringe Sokoine, who went to school in the early years of independence.

“I believe the Maasai are naturally taught and strong people when it comes to decision making for public interests. The time has come for you to send your children to school so that they can contribute to the building of the nation”.

During the fundraising the community donated 50 cows worth 15m/- and goats and sheep valued at 7m/-.

For his part, Arusha Region CCM Chairman Onesimus Nangole, who represented the former Prime Minister Edward Lowassa commended the desire for education which the community has shown.

“It is amazing to see that you are giving cows and goats to construct a secondary school, it is a historic change you will not regret by what you have given, your children will stir developments for the benefit of the community,” stressed Nangole.

Africa Amini Alama Charity Organisation Vice President Dr Cornelia Fresee said the community has made a big step by accepting to take responsibility in building their own school.

She said her organisation will also raise money from abroad to support the project. 

The function was attended by different district council officials and a total of 53m/- was raised.


Low teacher enrolment in colleges to double shortage in schools

The dire shortage of teachers in the country for both primary and secondary schools that is currently plaguing the country is expected to actually double due to minimal enrollment to teaching colleges.

This has been blamed on form four national examinations poor performance that has been ongoing for the past few year’s.

Speaking during the Eckernford Teachers’ Training Institute’s 17th Graduation ceremony held over the weekend in Tanga, Principal Dominic Katto said that between 2010 and 2012 the level of enrollment has persistently declined.

He sadly reported that most of the students lack even the very basic qualifications.

Meanwhile, the Acting Regional Administrative Secretary, Monica Kinala, said the government will continue to cooperate with non-governmental organizations to support the education sector in the country.

She said the current demand of teachers in primary and secondary schools is still wanting and she urged the private colleges in the country to strengthen up their services to complement the government initiatives.

"The government appreciates and encourages support from the private sector…,” she said.

She then urged graduates to recognise their social responsibilities and rise up to the challenge and maintain professional ethics at their work places.

Earlier, in the same occasion, Remius Tarimo, the institute’s chief executive officer reported that graduations are considerably encouraging.

"Over 7000 teachers secured their certificates and diplomas since the establishment of the institution back in 1994, we will continue to work closely with the government to reduce the shortage of teachers,” he added.

About 368 students graduated at the level of certificate and diploma during the event are expected to quickly join the work force but nonetheless the need is still extremely high.