WHEN the fifth phase government of President John Magufuli ascended to power in 2015, the government issued a circular that implements the Education and Training Policy 2014, and directs public bodies to ensure that Primary and Secondary education becomes free for all children.
This includes the removal of all forms of fees and contributions and it read in part as “provision of free education means pupils or students will not pay any fee or other contributions that were being provided by parents or guardians before the release of new circular.”
With this offer sponsored by taxpayers’ money parents and guard ians should know that constitutionally they are com pelled to make sure that all children are in schools.
Tanzania constitution just like many nations governed by the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child , requires that all children be given equal educational opportunity no matter what their race, ethnic back gr ound , religion, or sex, disability, or whether they are rich or poor, im plying that education is a right of every child , be he/she is a citizen or non-citizen in the country.
It w ould be wrong and unfortunate to find a child kept out of School as Schools open in this January by a parent/ guard ian just because one is living with disability or assigned labour work ( work that deprives child ren of their child hood , their potential and their dignity and harmful for their physical and mental development) in a farm , factory or a fam ily business.
This is an opportunity for the parents/guardians to fully exploit, because the government is spending a lot of m oney to pay for the children’s tuition, desks’ purchase and teachers’ salaries to see into that children learning in a friendly environment.
It would be illogical to find a parent/guardian keeping a child at home because of inability to settle simple indirect costs like school and sports’ uniforms and learning materials such as exercise books and pens, while major costs have been settled by the government.
Parents/guardians must also try to register their children in Schools, which are close to their homes to avoid incurring unnecessary costs of paying for their fares in commuter buses to same institutions, which offer the same quality ed ucation.
Subjecting children to scurry for buses and other means of transport to distant schools, has repercussions which in away interfere with their learning spirit and concentration in schools.