December 11, 2004

2,5 million books to be distributed by Government

Government has started distribution of over 2.5 million textbooks written in local languages and English worth K8.5 billion to basic and community schools in all the districts of Zambia. Over 60.000 copies of mathematics rainbow kits for primary school teachers of numeric would also be distributed. Ministry of Education acting permanent secretary Simon Chiputa, who kicked off the exercise in Lusaka, said that 14.000 copies of pupils' journal were distributed to encourage their personal writing. Heinemann in partnership with Maiden Publishers and supported by Department For International Development (DFID) in the United Kingdom published the books. Chiputa said the distribution of books was the fulfilment of Government policy on the improvement of literacy and numeric in schools. The primary reading programmes had been introduced to ensure that pupils in regular and community schools were able to read fluently and write clearly. Chiputa urged teachers to look after the books properly and make the best use of them and improve their learning and teaching methodologies. Speaking at the same function, Maiden Publishers director Christine Kasonde attributed the declining education standards in Zambia to poor reading and writing skills among pupils in schools. Ms Kasonde was hopeful that the books would help in reviving education standards. (The Times of Zambia, Ndola)

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