Government asked to increase funding to primary schools

Primary School block

Government has been asked to increase funding to primary schools as one way of improving standards of education in Malawi.

A primary school headteacher made the call in Karonga during a media tour that Malawi Economic Justice Network (MEJN) organized for journalists in Karonga to appreciate how schools are using funds from the School Improvement Grant (SIG) in the district.

A visit to Majalilo primary school showed that the school administration along with the management school committee constructed five toilets and maintained classroom blocks at the school which has an enrollment of about 750 learners.

The school also used the grant to buy 16 uniforms for needy learners and managed to maintain 56 desks.

Speaking in an interview, headteacher Peterson Moyo said the grant is inadequate considering the challenges that the school is facing.

“While we appreciate the grant, we feel it’s not enough considering the plans that the school has which include constructing more classroom blocks and teachers houses,” he said.

Adding, that government should consider adjusting upward the money in order to meet the needs of the schools.

Moyo’s plea over an increase of SIG were shared at Tilola and Hangalawe primary schools where the media were told that the funding was also inadequate.

In his remarks MEJN Regional coordinator Mike Banda said as part of tracking how SIG is being used in primary schools the organization sampled about 30 primary schools in Karonga and Phalombe.

“Through the samples that we conducted it’s evidently clear that SIG has brought a positive impact on schools as the grant is benefiting the end users and as an advocacy organization, we are happy with that,” he said.

With financial support from Oxfam, MEJN has implemented the social and accountability project in Karonga and Phalombe Districts.