Starting from March 1, the Tanzanian Ministry of Education has banned boarding for students in nursery and lower primary levels.
The country’s Education Commissioner, Lyabwene Mtahabwa, made the announcement stating that no student below Standard Four should be a boarder, except with a special permit that would be issued by the commissioner of education after receiving an application from the relevant stakeholder. This new policy aims to allow young students to bond with their families, build values and participate in various activities for the development of their families and communities.
According to The Citizen newspaper, Mtahabwa stated that boarding schools deprive children of the opportunity to bond with their families and communities. He further explained that many schools focused on making students pass their exams rather than building their morale.
Boarding and academic camps were used as strategies to achieve this goal but with limited success. Thus, students should not be boarding at such a young age. The family plays an integral role in contributing to a child’s upbringing and development.
Any school found violating the directive risks disciplinary or legal action or de-registration, Mtahabwa said. The ban on boarding for young students is a step towards building a strong foundation for children’s development and well-being, while also enabling them to stay connected with their families and communities.
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