United States of America (USA) Ambassador Virginia Palmer says Malawi can eradicate school dropouts, unwanted pregnancies and early marriages by reducing distances to school.
She made the remarks yesterday in Machinga when she officially handed over Nambaiko, Kayuni, Mwalasi and Ntalala community day secondary schools (CDSS) in Paramount Chief Kawinga in the district to the Ministry of Education, Science and Technology (MoEST).
The CDSSs are among 11 new secondary schools that United States Agency for International Development (USaid) is funding in Machinga and Balaka valued at $10.5 million (about K 7.7 billion) under the Apatseni Mwayi Atsikana Aphunzire (give girls a chance to learn) project implemented by Save the Children.
Palmer said the schools closer to their areas will enable students to concentrate in class and have time for studies as the time they used to spend in walking to school will be invested in academic work.
“By bringing secondary schools closer to where girls and boys live, MoEST and USaid hope to alleviate some of the barriers that hinder students from accessing and completing secondary school education including safety and financial burdens girls and boys face when schools are far from home,” she said.
Palmer further advised families and communities to encourage their children to be in school than giving them many house chores that may affect the children’s performance in class.
Minister of Education Science and Technology Bright Msaka described opening of the the schools as historical saying they will lead to the attainment of the country’s goal of access to quality education.n