Namwandi Blasts School Inspectors

The Minister of Education, Dr David Namwandi, had no kind words for education inspectors and education officers, when he addressed them at Rundu last week.

According to him it is disheartening that some inspectors do not carry out substantive school visits and do not provide regular reports to regional directors on what happens on the ground. “You know that not all our teachers are effective and efficient pedagogically. Not all our principals are effective leaders [and] experts.” Dr Namwandi made the blunt remarks during a meeting with inspectors and chief education officers from all fourteen regions at Rundu last week. He expressed concern about inspectors saying it is disappointing to hear about challenges in schools from outsiders, while there are inspectors in the various education circuits. “Why is this happening? I am talking to you in all seriousness as you are the monitors of the curriculum, you are the presiding officers ensuring that policies, rules and regulations are implemented and adhered to. It is my conviction that you have internalised the concept ‘inspection’. By simple definition, inspection implies an official process of checking that things are in the correct condition or that people are doing what they ought to do.”

He further reminded inspectors of education that they are not supposed to be office-bound, adding that 80 percent of their time should be spent in the field. “Inspection takes place at schools, not over the phone. Inspectors of education are the fore-front soldiers who are supposed to visit schools with a clear mission to assist school management and not only the principal as it were. The question that is so profound is – is this happening? If so why are things the way they are still in some schools?” the education minister queried.

Namwandi also lashed out at teachers and principals, who go to school late and unprepared. “I am told that there are some teachers or managers who absent themselves with no permission from schools and spent the whole time, sometimes the whole week in towns under the pretext of carrying out official duties. If that happens to be true, can we expect good results from such schools other than disaster and dismal performance?” He said what is even more painful to bear is the fact that some inspectors are not reprimanding principals who are under-performing. “Surprising, some inspectors even praise such acts of mediocrity in terms of service delivery. I am aware that some principals are overriding, overpowering inspectors. Some don’t even take orders from them, but who is to be blamed? Neglecting our duties has cost a lot of unrepaired damage to our system. May I hasten to say that it is just a small percentage of some of us who are bringing disrepute to our system and this is unacceptable,” he said.

Source : New Era