The impact of structural adjustment programmes on teaching and learning of science in public secondary schools in Tanzania.

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Date
1996
Journal Title
Journal ISSN
Volume Title
Publisher
University of Dar es Salaam
Abstract
The purpose of the study was to investigate the effects of the Structural Adjustment Programmes (SAPs) on teaching and learning of science in public secondary schools in Tanzania. The investigation was done in respect of supply of science equipment in schools and the way it affected methods of teaching, teachers` working and living conditions, role of Non-governmental Organizations on science education in public secondary schools, and how teachers/students coped with limited teaching and learning resources during the SAPs. Focus on the government expenditure on education before and during SAPs was made, then attention was paid to the government's expenditure on science education with special reference to public secondary schools. The laboratories were visited so that the real situation of availability of equipment could be seen. The school libraries were also visited so that the availability of books could be seen. Teachers' living conditions were also studied. Four main procedures were employed in this study for the collection of data. These were interview schedules, questionnaires, checklists and observation. A stratified random sampling was used in electing the respondents. In this study the respondents were the science teachers, heads of schools, students and the budget officers of the Ministry of Education and Culture. The findings revealed that teachers' incentives were adversely affected during the SAPS. The government's ability to fund education declined and science subjects were taught without practical work and experiments due to the increased inadequacies of equipment during the SAPS. The working and living conditions of teachers were more horrible during the SAPS than they were before. It was concluded that Structural Adjustment Programmes aggravated the problems in teaching science. There were more shortages of equipment in public secondary schools during SAPs than ever before. 85% of students said they were very dissatisfied with that situation. Government expenditure on education and science fell drastically during SAPs. Even external aid became more unreliable in this period. Coping with poor living conditions, teachers were allowed to create sideline activities. Tuition classes were cheaper for teachers as other activities needed more capital. The problem with this was that some teachers transferred school teaching materials to their homes for tuition classes. Apart from this, teachers improvised more home-made materials in tuition classes than they did in schools. This was done to attract more students. Suggestions for promoting teaching and learning of science have been given. The government has to improve its budget on education in general and science specifically, restructure teachers' salaries and introduce reliable fringe benefits. The government should introduce strong income-generating projects such as: Lottery and charity walks, taxation of luxury goods and introducing special funds for science in schools.
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Keywords
Structural adjustment programmes (SAP), Economic conditions, 1945 -1990, Science, Study and teaching (Secondary), Teachers, Economic policy, 1970 -1980, Tanzania
Citation
Mejala, E. M. (1996). The impact of structural adjustment programmes on teaching and learning of science in public secondary schools in Tanzania. Master dissertation, University of Dar es Salaam. Available at (http://41.86.178.3/internetserver3.1.2/search.aspx?formtype=advanced)