The challenge of teacher shortages in Matabeleland North Province has been described as not as bad as reported with 300 more recently employed.

The shortage of teachers has affected most provinces, but the government says the situation in Matabeleland North is not as bad as first feared.

“The situation is not very bad in his area as 300 more teachers had been recently engaged. However, the infants and Advance Level categories need more attention,” Matabeleland North Provincial Education Director, Mr Jabulani Aggry Mpofu revealed.

Mr Mpofu said the current challenges are a result of the introduction of a new curriculum that has more specialised demands.

While ECD teachers are the major concern for the infants division of the province, Advanced level also has gaps in pure science subjects such as Physics, Mathematics, Chemistry and Biology, as well as agriculture and computer science subjects.

Shortages at Ordinary Level are minimal in technical vocational subjects like metal technology and design, technical graphics and design as well as wood technology and design.

On shortening the distance travelled by students to and from school, Mr Mpofu indicated that a number of satellite schools had been established in the province, while low cost boarding schools had also been set up in partnership with CAMFED, a non-profit making organisation.

Binga, Umguza and Bubi have seen the greatest number of satellite schools being set up with the need for more players to join hands in ensuring the learning environment is made user friendly.