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Education Amendment Bill, 2005 [H.B. 6C, 2005]
February 23, 2006

This is the Bill as passed by the Senate on Thursday 23rd February, 2006, incorporating the amendments made to clause 5 by the Senate1. The amended Bill must now be returned to the House of Assembly for consideration of the amendments made by the Senate

To view the previous iteration of this Bill read H.B. 6A, 2005 published on Wednesday 8th February, 2006.

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Education Amendment Bill, 2005 [H.B. 6C, 2005]

MEMORANDUM

The purpose of this Bill is to amend the Education Act [Chapter 25:04] ("the principal Act") with a view to update it and correct certain anomalies that have come to the attention of the Ministry.

The individual clauses of the Bill are explained more fully below.

Clause 1
This clause sets out the bill's short title.

Clause 2
This clause will amend the Preamble to the principal Act by deleting terms like "Government teachers colleges" and "teachers colleges" wherever they appear.

Clause 3
This clause seeks to amend the interpretation section of the principal Act. It will delete from the principal Act definitions of terms that are no longer in use for example "fixed date" and "school education". It will insert definitions of new terms that have been introduced in the principal Act. It repeals and substitute principal definitions of terms whose meanings in the Act have been found to have changed over the years.

Clause 4
This clause seeks to substitute section 3 by specifying the institutions to which the principal Act shall apply.

Clause 5
This clause seeks to substitute section 21 of the principal Act. The new provision makes it mandatory for every responsible authority to first of all apply to the Secretary for his approval before charging any fee or levy or making any increase thereto. The Secretrary is in turn obliged to approve the increase applied for where such increase does not exceed the percentage increase in the cost of living from the beginning to the end of the preceding term as indicated by the Consumer Price Index published by the Central Statistics Office. The clause also requires the responsible authority to get the approval of a majority of the parents at a meeting of the School Parents Assembly attended by not less than twenty per centum of the parents. The clause also requires the responsible authority to get the approval of a majority of the parents at a meeting of the School Parents Assembly attended by not less than twenty per centum of the parents, where the responsible authority seeks to increase fees or levies in excess of the level specified under subsection (2). The provision also outlines the details that are to be included in the application and the various decisions the Secretary can make.

Clause 6
This clause seeks to substitute section 22 of the principal Act. The new provision gives the Minister additional powers in dealing with appeals in relation to fees to fix an appropriate fee or levy over and above granting or refusing an appeal.

Clause 7
This clause seeks to substitute section 36 of the principal Act. The new provision provides for the constitution of a School Parents Assembly by parents with children at any school. The School Parents Assembly will in turn establish a School Development Committee whose composition, functions and duties will be as prescribed.

Clause 8
This clause seeks to substitute section 38 of the principal Act. The new provision provides for the payment of all fees for educational facilities into the School Services fund established in terms of the Audit and Exchequer Act [Chapter 22:03]. The provision makes it the duty of the responsible authority of every non-government school to establish a School Services Fund. The provision also states the purposes of the School Services Fund.

Clause 9
This clause proposes to repeal sections 55, 56, 57 and 58 of the principal Act as they have been found to be no longer relevant.

Clause 10
This clause seeks to substitute section 59 of the principal Act. The new provision proposes to give the Minister power to prescribe the minimum qualifications of all teachers to be employed in all schools. The provision also gives the Secretary power to vet the qualifications of all teachers to be employed by all schools and direct any responsible authority to terminate the service of any teacher who is not properly qualified. This provision was necessitated by the fact that some non-government schools were employing teachers who were experienced in certain sporting activities without holding the necessary qualifications.

Clause 11
This clause seeks to substitute section 60 of the principal Act. The new provision proposes the making of regulations by the Minister to govern the conduct and behaviour of all teachers who are not members of the Public Service. Such regulations shall prevail over any other regulations, contract, rules or code of conduct. Such regulations are also supposed to be as nearly as possible similar in their substantive provisions to the regulations governing the conduct and behaviour of teachers who are members of the Public Service.

Clause 12
This clause seeks to substitute section 62 of the principal Act. The new provision proposes the teaching of all the three main languages of Zimbabwe namely English, Shona, Ndebele and such other local language in all schools up to form two level on an equal-time basis. Prior to form one, any of these languages may be used as the medium of instruction depending on which language is better understood by the pupils. There is provision that sign language shall be the priority medium of instruction for the deaf and hard of hearing. This provision is meant to cater for the diverse needs throughout the country. There is also provision for the teaching of foreign languages in schools where the Minister so authorises.

Clause 13
This clause seeks to substitute section 68 of the principal Act. The new provision proposes the recognition of more than one association of teachers. This has been necessitated by the realisation that other associations have arisen and there is need to recognise them.

Clause 14
This clause proposes to amend section 69 of the principal Act by giving the Minister power to make regulations on school uniforms in schools.

Clause 15 and Schedule
This clause and the Schedule effect various small amendments to the principal Act.

Presented by the Minister of Education, Sport and Culture


BILL
To amend the Education Act [Chapter 25:04] and to provide for matters connected therewith or incidental thereto.

ENACTED by the President and the Parliament of Zimbabwe.

1 Short title
This Act may be cited as the Education Amendment Act, 2005.

2 Amendment of the Preamble to Cap 25:04
The long title to the Education Act [Chapter 25:04] is amended by the deletion of the terms "Government teachers colleges" and "teachers colleges" wherever they appear.

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1 The original Bill was H.B. 6, 2005. It received an adverse report from the Parliamentary Legal Committee. It was then replaced by a "new consolidated text", H.B. 6A, 2005, which promptly received a non-adverse report from the Parliamentary Legal Committee and was then passed by the House of Assembly with several amendments, and referred to the Senate as H.B. 6B, 2005.. Now, having been passed by the Senate with amendments to clause 5, it has become H.B. 6C, 2005 and must be returned to the House of Assembly for consideration of those amendments.

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