Education ministry excited for new academic year: Steenkamp

WINDHOEK: The Ministry of Education’s Executive Director, Sanet Steenkamp, has said the ministry is excited to welcome learners for the new academic year and called on learners to use the opportunities every school day provides.

Speaking to Nampa on Monday, as learners throughout the country began the 2024 academic year, she said more than 98 200 Grade 1 learners started school on Monday.

‘Every day provides us with an opportunity to learn so use it to the fullest. Be respectful toward teachers and guard against ill-discipline and bullying,’ Steenkamp said.

She also urged learners to surround themselves with the right friends who will support them in their learning.

The executive director further said Namibia’s 31 974 teachers are eager to welcome learners for the new academic year, and added that teachers are the ministry’s most valuable resource.

‘We look up to you and appreciate you,’ Steenkamp said while delivering a word of encouragement to teachers.

Steenkamp said Namibia has 2 002 schools, of whi
ch 1 722 are State schools and 280 private schools, all of which will be bustling with activity this week as the academic year commences.

‘We need to recommit to tackling quality and inclusive education where no child is left behind and every child matters, with no one sent away without report cards. We need teachers to return to the basics, to be well prepared and teach according to the syllabi, bringing pleasure, enthusiasm, and creativity back into the classroom,’ the executive director said.

Steenkamp said principals are crucial in setting a well-prepared, inclusive and welcoming. tone for this academic year.

‘This can be accomplished by improving team morale and uniting their workforce, while also valuing their ideas and talents, as well as their skills. It also entails being cognisant and respectful of the diverse group of parents, as well as being careful of State resources,’ she said.

The executive director indicated that by 2023, there were 864 707 learners in Namibian schools, with the student p
opulation increasing by at least 3 per cent every year.

Source: The Namibia Press Agency