By Tamala Kamanga – Mana.
Member of Parliament for Dowa South East, Halima Daudi has called for communities in Dowa to take education as a gateway to bright future of their children.
She made the remarks on Sunday when she handed over a new Community Day Secondary School block at Kafumphe Primary School in Traditional Authority (TA) Mkukula, which has been constructed by Dowa district council under the Governance to Enable Service Delivery.
Daudi said the new CDSS was expected to increase chances and numbers of learners from surrounding areas, being selected into secondary schools.
“This should be a motivation for children, especially girls to remain in school, and for parents to make sure of this.The importance of education cannot be overemphasized; it is one of the effective building blocks for both personal and national development.
“If we want our children to have bright future, then we must make sure that we send them to school. That is why we are focused on improving access to education in the district,” she said.
Daudi added saying learners in the area who dropped out of school because of long distances now have a chance to reevaluate their decisions because there is now a secondary school within their vicinity.
She strongly spoke against leaving school for marriages and against anyone facilitating this.
“At a young age, you should not be in marriages but in school. That is why we are strengthening all these efforts. I urge all parents, guardians, community, and faith-based leaders to help our children make the decision of going back to school,” Daudi said.
The new CDSS comes with all necessities like toilets for both teachers and students, and desks. The school block has two rooms each equipped with 50 desks, and it is expected to welcome the first cohort of leaners in the coming academic year.
Chief Education Officer for Dowa, Batson Kangulu said the new CDSS would reduce the distance to access secondary schools as some leaners from the area travel around seven to 15 kilometres to find a secondary school.
He said the school would increase the overall figures of secondary school selection in the district.
“Some studentsdo not get selected to secondary schools not because they have failed, but because of limited space in secondary schools. This CDSS will open a space for selection of learners in secondary schools in the district,” Kangulu said.
One of the girls who dropped out of school after being selected to CDSS which was far away, Rabecca Banda said that she was happy with the development.
“I dropped out of school because I was walking a long distance to reach school. This affected my performance I was not doing well in class as I was always fatigued due to the long walks.
“But with the coming of the CDSS in this area, I will go back to school this coming academic year to pursue my studies,” she said.
Village headman Gomba welcomed the development said that this would help in reduction of school dropouts in girls and teenage pregnancies in his area.
He pleaded for water, electricity, more classroom blocks, and teacher houses at the school.