By Dr. Takavafira Zhou
Preliminary research findings by Ptuz show that 75% of teachers are suffering from stress related challenges due to poor salaries and conditions of service. 99.99% have mentally resigned although they physically remain at their work places.
Due to stress related challenges cases of conflict in schools have escalated, while alcoholism and suicide cases have also increased. There is need for urgent intervention by government in order to serve the education system from total collapse and degeneration. Such a reprieve must ensure that teachers are paid a living wage as professionals. It is criminal to entrust the education system to angry, miserable and poorly paid teachers. The young people are the best asset that any nation has and must be entrusted to responsible and motivated teachers. The level of underpayment of teachers in Zimbabwe has reached unprecedented scale. Teachers have fallen from grace to grass with monotonous regularity under the so called new dispensation.
—Dr Takavafira M. Zhou is President of Progressive Teachers’ Union of Zimbabwe