Pakati, Chanetsa & Mapanga schools to re-open!

A deserted Pakati Secondary school in March 2020

News announced yesterday confirmed that schools across Zimbabwe are to re-open very soon. Reports coming through say that the following dates apply:

Monday 15/03/2021 – all exam classes to return – Grade 7 (Primary) and Form 4 (Secondary), plus Form 6 (A level)

Monday 22/03/2021 – all other classes to return

A strangely quiet Mapanga Primary school in April 2020

Below are some comments from contacts, some of the Heads of the 5 schools in Ward 14.

Mr Mahachi (Pakati Primary) – “We are not yet ready, but hope we will be ready by the date. We expect deliveries of some few PPEs from our district offices before opening, and the exam class teachers will be starting on the 10th to help with preparation work.”

Hoping to see scenes of students returning, like these from Pakati Primary in October 2020

Mrs Maenzanise (Mapanga Primary) – “Here we are really good. We are running around to put everything in order for schools are opening 15 March.”

Mapanga Primary student arrives & sanitizes in readiness for class in October 2020

Mr Mawedze (Chanetsa Secondary) – “We are starting to enrol Form 1 learners today, To start preparation to for opening schools, we will put all the measures which we can to protect our learners and teachers from covid19. We will improvise whatever we can. We are doing staff development meetings so that all teachers are well equiped with the covid information .This will allow us to protect the learners and ourselves from covid19 infection as a team.”

Chanetsa Secondary school during lockdown, June 2020

Below are some more pics from the re-opening in October 2020, from both Pakati schools & Mapanga Primary – we hope to see similar pictures very soon:

Other restrictions are also being eased as Zimbabwe starts to re-open its economy. Below are the changes which are to be introduced according to reports (unconfirmed at this stage):

1. Wearing of face masks, tempreture checks and washing of hands in all public areas remains mandatory
2. Curfew adjusted 10pm to 05:30 am
3. Supermarkets open up to 7pm
4. Industry to open with strict adherence to WHO standards and national guidelines..
5. Letters no longer required for movement
6. SMEs , food markets and informal markets can reopen on condition of strictly adhering to WHO standards
7. Intercity travel, can now resume, but operators must ensure disinfection, wearing of masks, sanitisation

I also received this update from a source on 25th Feb on the Covid situation in Zimbabwe:

“Vaccination has begun to front line workers with just over 4000 vaccinated. Yersterday there were 50 new cases and 4 deaths. Cumulatively we have around 35 000 cases around 2000 active cases, around 1400 deaths and around 32 000 recoveries.”

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If you or anyone you know would like to help us to support the schools, please see our fundraising & merchandise pages:

https://friendsofpakati.com/2021/01/24/pcs-to-pakati/ and https://friendsofpakati.com/merchandise/

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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