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Tanzania Development

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In Tanzania both, the Tanzania development vision 2025 and MKUKUTA, regards education as a strategic tool for mindset transformation of Tanzanians through equipping them with knowledge, skills, value and attitudes which will enable them to competently and competitively cope with the national and international challenges posed by globalization. But the problem comes that there are some places in the country which failed to perform well in primary schools and fail to performance as it is expected. This paper will try to show a certain place in Tanzania which is performing very poor due the specific reasons or causes within such area and other general causes, but also this paper will try to use some of the organizational theories to improve productivity as the measures to advice the ministry of education to sort out the problem of poor performance in primary schools. The primary school leaving examination (PSLE) result is an indicator to show whether a certain region is performing better or worse.

We choose Nanyumbu district in Mtwara region to situate the problems of poor performance of primary schools. Why Mtwara region? Because the regional performance at large also is not good, the rank of the region in 2015 was in 12 out of 26 regions, in 2016 was in 25 and 2017 was ranked 22 out of 26, generally the performance is not impressive (Daily news 2017)  Academic performance refers to, the ability to study and remember facts, being able to study effectively and see how facts fits together and form large patterns of knowledge and also able to communicate your knowledge verbally or down on paper (Hypnosis Downloads, 2006).

Why Nanyumbu? The Primary School Leaving Examination (PSLE) results indicates that Nanyumbu District was ranked 184 out of 185 Districts in Tanzania Mainland with the majority of the students from the schools (Nanyumbu schools) mountaineering on poor grades not worth to grant them secondary education.  Primary schools in Nanyumbu require special attention, (Daily News, May 12, 2017).

Factors Influencing Poor Academic Performance in Primary School Leaving Examinations in Nanyumbu district

 Nanyumbu primary schools in Mtwara region face poor infrastructure condition, a situation education analysts point as a major contributing factor to poor academic performance in the district. According to Nanyumbu District Executive Director Mr. Hamisi Dambaya, there are 94   primary schools in Nanyumbu with only 464 classrooms to accommodate a total of 37, 314 pupils, among them 18, 817 girls and 18,497 boys,” he says and adds that schools faces a shortage of 469 classrooms to accommodate all the increasing population of the students. Due to the shortage they established 44 classes under trees but the question here comes what about during the rain seasons? Do these pupils attend classes and how could they perform according to the expectation, but also 43 others in grass thatched roofed. Also there is a shortage of 144 offices and 735 teachers’ residential houses, 146 stores and a total of 962 toilets for both pupils and teachers. Nanyumbu teachers require a total of 1,120 residential houses, currently they have only have 385, they require a total of 735 to help accommodate the number of teachers needed in the schools,” he says and notes that schools also require 232 offices (present 132).

Nanyumbu primary schools also face a shortage of teachers, the ratio of pupils to teachers is incompatible, and the schools have very few teachers to handle the number of the pupils in schools something which contributing to the poor performance. Nanyumbu primary schools still holds the universal primary education (UPE) teachers who most of them employed in 1970s and are now at the age of retiring. For example in 2016/17, 28 teachers employed under UPE retired and we expect 28 and 29 teachers to retire in 2017/18 2018/19 respectively. But for 2016 and 2017 the district did not received new teachers to replace the gap. Moreover teachers are not attracted to go to work in Nanyumbu primary schools because of the poor infrastructure and poor working environment at large.

 Childbearing for adolescents is very high in Mtwara as statistics show that 35.5% of adolescent had started childbearing in Mtwara compared to 26% countrywide as projected by the Tanzania National Bureau of Statistics (TNBS) in 2004 (Batho 2012). It estimated that up to 1 percent of primary school girls within the age of fertility become pregnant every year. Each year around 500 pregnancies reported from primary schools in Mtwara region including Nanyumbu district (Kessler 2009). These factors result in many negative outcomes to girls education (dropout from school, poor academic performance, low value on girl's education, inequality, early pregnancies, lessening time to study) which at the end it affects the participation of girls' in education. Traditional Ceremonies like Unyago (which is considered as a local rite of passage, which girls undergo through it at an early stage of maturity, aims to introduce girls to social roles and sexually related roles as women in Mtwara) affects girls' education, because these ceremonies also increase absenteeism of girls in school and at the end causing poor performance in primary schools.  

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