**Midweek Star** Mr Mutyavaviri – Former Teacher at Pakati Secondary school (Part 1)

I am delighted to (re)introduce Mr Mutyavaviri, a recent former teacher at Pakati Secondary school. He is popular among former colleagues and students alike.. Firstly, I will repeat the brief profile he have us back in 2019, before adding much more information recently. Read & enjoy…

Staff Profile – Mr Mutyavaviri, Head of Humanities, teacher of Maths

Born: Kadoma, Mashonaland West

Trained: Belvedere Technical Teachers College (2008)

Specialist in Economics & Accounts, can teach Maths, Commerce & Business Studies

Teacher at Pakati: since 2011

Life at Pakati – It is OK, but would like a more reliable & perennial indoor water supply.

If I wasn’t a teacher….I would be a book-keeper, accounts clerk, data capture clerk or any other business/accounting related job

Hobbies/interests: watching movies, reading, and writing articles

Fact no-one knows about me: nobody knows or can believe that I used to be a vibrant gospel preacher

With colleagues Mrs Pindura and Mrs Munatswa during a staff training course in Harare

“Hi everyone, I hope I find you well. Here is a narrative story of my life at Pakati which comes in two parts. The first part focuses on how I joined Pakati and became a well known part of the Pakati Secondary school staff community.

In May 2011 I was deployed to Pakati Secondary as an Accounts and Commerce teacher, moving from Nyamashato Secondary in the same district of Murewa in Mashonaland East. I had been at Nyamashato for two years and wanted to move either to a school in Harare, or closer to Harare as I had just registered for my ACCA studies.

Nyamashato was too far from the city for me to do studies. I couldn’t find an immediate school in Harare to move to, instead I found a swap transfer to Pakati Secondary, which was a good move. When I got to Pakati, there was no Accounts at the school at that time, I was told that the teacher I had swapped with taught Commerce and Geography so I had to take those subjects.

I indicated to Mr Chingoriwo, the then Headmaster, that I couldn’t teach Geography so I was going back to the district, to tell them that they had sent me for a wrong deployment. Instead of letting me just go, he asked me the other subjects I could teach besides Accounts which wasn’t being offered.

On a school outing with some students, 2018

Being a Commercials person, Maths was the only other subject at the school I could teach but there was already a teacher for Maths. Mr Chingoriwo made some internal arrangements to change the allocation for the then Maths teacher so that I could have a Maths and Commerce teaching load, and it worked out well.

A few days after joining the school, the Head tasked me to take up the responsibility of coaching the school senior boys soccer team. I’m generally good at most sporting activities undertaken in schools, but my passion is in baseball and volleyball. I tried to avoid the responsibility but after he indicated some technicalities, I accepted the role accordingly.

On meeting the soccer team, I enquired how the school team had been performing against other schools, and was told that it had been long since the team managed to get through to finals at zonal competitions as there were bigger High schools in the zone (Musami High and Chemhondoro High) which always dominated. I set a target that we would reach finals at the zonal competitions that year (2011) as I needed time to get to know the students, and that the following year (2012), we would reach finals at district competitions.

My target seemed outrageous as there where 9 schools in our zone that time, Pakati secondary being one of the small ones and beating Chemhondoro and Musami was something the students didn’t envisage. I had to work extra hard to achieve the target. I focused much on training physical fitness and building a team spirit. On the zonal competitions day, we beat Chemhondoro in the semi finals and were beaten by Musami in the finals. Wow, thank God for answering my prayers, my first target at the school was just a success.

The local community noticed the achievement. Next was to focus on how I would manage to get the school team to reach district competitions the following year. My players needed to be motivated, so I pleaded with the head for the school to procure a new soccer uniform for the boys. Seeing the passion I had and the performance of the team at the ended zonal competitions, the head promised to work on my request.

In 2012, I started training the team during the last weeks of first term. During the same period, the school gave us funds for a new soccer uniform, I chose a Barcelona uniform and the team was nicknamed Baca. This was motivational to the players. I would take the boys to a steep dwala (small hill) in Chinhoyi village near Mr Baye’s home.

My thrust was to have a physically invincible team because it wasn’t going to be easy for a small school like Pakati. To beat all the other 8 schools in our zone and proceed to district competitions was something I believed was possible. God started working to our favour before zonal athletics competition of 2012, as our zone was divided into two (Musami A and Musami B). Pakati was placed in Musami A, where Chemhondoro High was also placed. This meant that one huge task (Musami High) had been removed.

Mr Magabaza training Pakati Senior boys soccer team, 2018

Mr Magabaza, the then sports director at Pakati, went on leave during that term and I was asked to act on his behalf. I was voted to be the sports zonal representative. On the athletics zonal competitions days, we realised that the manner in which the zone had been divided was unfair. The two high schools were each put in a seperate zone, meaning each would still remain the power house in its zone.

Being the zonal sports rep gave me the capacity to push for reshuffling of the zone, which I managed to accomplish before the soccer competitions. My aim was creating a way for Pakati to reach district competitions. The 2012 senior team zonal competitions were held at Pakati, a positive thing for the team. Our local community had been witnessing how hard I was training the team, so they thronged the school grounds to support the team on the day of the competitions. The team won the zonal competitions, thank God. Morale became high within the team but the target of reaching finals at the district was still a hard one to achieve.

This lead to Pakati soccer team getting a new nickname – as we talked about the game someone said ‘we bulldozed them!’, hence we called ourselves the Bulldozers ever since.

Nyahuni high, which had gone to semi finals as second position team in our pool won the other semi finals so we had to meet them for the second time in the finals, after beating them in the pools stage. The match officials for the finals connived with Nyahuni to work against our team which saw our scores being denied leading to our students giving up and abandoning the match. However, we just encouraged them to finish the game, which due to obedience they did, but without any more heart hence we were beaten in penalty shoot outs of the district competitions.

I still maintain vivid memories of my 2012 Pakati soccer team which was captained by Gilbert Mhishi (now based in South Africa). It was a well behaved and committed team. This made the then new teacher (me – Mr Mutyavaviri) at Pakati Secondary well known in the local community. In 2013 I told the headmaster that I had accomplished my targets for the soccer team and was moving to the sport of my passion, thus I moved to volleyball.

Part 2 of my story (which will be with you soon) will focus on the academic circle and social interactions of my stay at Pakati as well as comments on development, achievements and general overview of the school during my time there.

Till next time. Mutyavaviri, T

Greeting the Author, September 2019

Author:

My name is Chris Walker, and between January 1989 and September 1991 I worked, through VSO (Voluntary Service Overseas), at Pakati Secondary School in Murehwa South district in Zimbabwe. I was a Maths teacher for 2 years, the Acting Head for the last 8 months there. I have also taught in Botswana & the UK, had 4 years working for VSO, and spent the last 14 years as a Civil Servant in Bradford. I married a Zimbabwean woman & we have 2 sons.

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