Primary schools operating as adult education centres in Tanzania

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University of Dar es Salaam
Primary schools in Tanzania have been operating as centres for adult education since the adoption of the Tanzania Second five-year Plan in 1969. The schools have been gradually transformed into people's schools by using their staff and facilities for both children`s education, adult education and non-formal education general. The main purpose of this study was to examine the work of adult education performed by and in the Tanzanian primary schools as they operate as adult education centres. The role of the teachers the learner characteristics the extent to which the schools have been used, the kinds of adult programmes offered and the way the community needs were identified were the main aspects studied. Secondly the study made a general survey on the implications of the Adult Education Policy stated in the Second Five-Year Plan (1969-1974). A general assessment of the implications of policy and practice of the above mentioned plan was investigated. Sixteen primary schools, five each from the Dar es Salaam and Morogoro Regions and six from the Kilimanjaro Region constituted the total sample of the study. There were eleven urban schools and five rural schools. It was assumed that all the sixteen sampled schools operated as centres for adult education and that there was close co-operation between the primary school staff and officers from the other departments, parastatals and other organizations like CCM Youth League and various religious groups. It was also assumed that the policy of Adult Education was implemented in the primary schools. The findings of the research revealed that most of the sampled primary schools operated as adult education centres.Out of the total sample ten schools [about 62 percent] operated as adult education centres three of them (about 19 percent ) rendered staff assistance and for provided school facilities for adult education' one school (just over 6percent) was a craft school and two schools (about 13 percent) did not operate as adult education centres nor did they provide staff assistance and school facilities for adult education. The main problems faced by the schools in their operation as centres for adult education were as follows:(a) increased primary school enrollment caused by efforts to achieve Universal Primary the end of 1977 which resulted in many schools introducing mult-streamed classes. (b) teachers complained that they had been overworked; (c)shortage of teaching materials and (d) the learners complaints about short-sightedness and late finishing of adult classes. The following conclusions and suggestions are drawn from the findings of the study: (a) It is concluded that most primary schools in the three research regions as well as regions outside the research regions operate as centres for adult education. (b) The most crucial problem of overburdening the school staff by working in the mornings and afternoons for children education and for adult education after the afternoon children`s class hours implies that the work of schools both for children`s education and adult education of is ineffective. The problems of shortage of teaching materials for adult education also contributes to the implication made on the ineffectiveness of adult education provided at the primary schools which operate as adult education centres. (c) The frequent use of identifying community needs by asking the adults present in the classes is possibly be one of the causes of low attendance in adult class. The methods used were inadequate because they take into account the needs of the minority of the total community population. It is suggested that committees are established in the schools who would go around the community members after every six months to find out the people's needs and problems upon which the adult programmes can be mounted. Chapter one describes the problem, purpose and limitations of the study and the conceptual background of Tanzanian adult education. Related literature to this study is reviewed in Chapter two. A number of country case studies of the kind of work performed by primary schools community schools and rural schools in adult education are reviewed. Chapter three has discussion on the study sample, methods of data collection and analysis the study design assumptions and the definition of terms. Chapter four deals with the discussion of the research findings. In the fifth chapter, the main elements of the study are summarized and conclusions drawn. Suggesting for further research are also made in this last chapter. The Adult Education section of the Tanzania Second Five-Year Plan (1969-1974) and the actual instruments used for data collection are in Appendices (1) and (2) respectively.
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Adult education schools, Underdeveloped areas, Adult education, Tanzania
Ilagi, G.L (1977) Primary schools operating as adult education centres in Tanzania, masters dissertation, University of Dar es Salaam.Available at (