Government, through the Lotteries and Gaming Board, has embarked on a programme of constructing multi-disciplinary vocational training colleges (VTCs) countrywide to equip secondary school leavers with essential technical skills, President Mnangagwa has said.
In a speech read on his behalf by Primary and Secondary Education Minister Professor Paul Mavima during the commissioning of two classroom blocks at Sacred Heart Girls High School in Esigodini, Matabeleland South Province, yesterday, President Mnangagwa said the ongoing programme, which started in Seke District in Mashonaland East Province, was part Government's socio-economic interventions in line Vision 2030, which seeks to transform the country into an upper middle income economy within the next 12 years.
"The socio-economic developmental work by the Lotteries and Gaming Board stretches beyond building classroom blocks as they are currently constructing a multi-disciplinary vocational training college in the Seke District of Mashonaland East whereby secondary school leavers that have the will but no means to pursue further education shall be enrolled to pursue their desired life skills in various technical spheres like agriculture, commerce, industry, sporting and so forth.
"This model of vocational training colleges is intended to be replicated by the Lotteries and Gaming Board throughout all provinces in due course," he said.
The construction of the Sacred Heart Girls High School classroom blocks was funded by the Lotteries and Gaming Board.
The Lotteries and Gaming Board, which falls under the Ministry of Home Affairs and Cultural Heritage, has funded a number of developmental projects countrywide which also include construction of the Lotteries and Gaming Board Vocational Training College in Chihota communal area.
The President said the working architecture of the Lotteries and Gaming Board should be replicated in businesses as good practice.
He said the socio-economic interventions, which are being undertaken by the Lotteries and Gaming Board, would not be possible without the lean structure approach it adopted at its inception 10 years ago under the stewardship of Vice President Kembo Mohadi, who was then Home Affairs Minister.
President Mnangagwa commended the authorities at Sacred Heart Girls High School for their proactive approach to ensure that girls pursue their education from Form One to Advanced Level without interruptions of changing schools for progression to the next level.
He said the investment by the Lotteries and Gaming Board, which is building classroom blocks in schools throughout the country, is a commendable development in the education sector.
The President said to date the Lotteries and Gaming Board has completed 21 projects nationally that include classroom blocks, furniture, laboratory equipment and the drilling of boreholes in schools to provide clean water.
Some of the projects, which President Mnangagwa said were ready for commissioning include Masungamala Primary School in Lupane, Matabeleland North, Justice Chauke Secondary School in Chikombedzi, Masvingo province, Mazowe High School in Mashonaland Central, Mufudziwakanaka Secondary School in Sadza, Mashonaland East and Gomo Primary School in Zvishavane, Midlands among others.
Speaking at the same occasion, the Minister of Home Affairs and Cultural Heritage, Ambassador Cain Mathema, said the Lotteries and Gaming Board would also provide Sacred Heart with laboratory equipment to promote the teaching of science so that the girl child is fully empowered in line with Government's vision of ensuring quality education, especially for the girl child.
Minister of State for Matabeleland South Provincial Affairs Cde Abednico Ncube said in the quest to embrace the new curriculum, the province needs science infrastructure in 161 secondary schools as only 40 percent of schools in the province have facilities for the teaching of sciences while the rest are ill-equipped for sciences.
The Sacred Heart Girls High School headmistress, Sister Ludo Matu-Ncube, said the Roman Catholic run institution thrives on promoting quality education for the girl child in line with President Mnangagwa's Vision 2030.
Under the same programme, the Lotteries and Gaming Board is building classroom blocks throughout rural areas in all provinces.