As a firm specializing in market research and data analysis through surveys, feasibility studies, polls, among others, we hope to bring valuable insights through today’s article as we focus on the percentage of expatriate educationists in Botswana.
Education system almost collapsed
As Kamau (2004) would put it in his research paper ‘Botswana inherited a poorly developed education system with very few if any trained teachers at all levels of education’. This inevitably led to massive recruitment of teachers from beyond borders as the education system expanded after independence. Most of the expatriate teachers came from neighbouring African countries such as Zimbabwe, Zambia, Kenya, Ghana, Eswatini, and South Africa.
It is reported that the education system of Botswana almost collapsed when many Zimbabweans relocated to their country after having attained their independence in 1980. One school is recorded to have had only 5 Batswana and 28 ex-pat teachers in 1978. Most of the expatriate educationists were found in secondary schools as the training of primary school teachers only needed a 2-year education certificate.
Impressive expansion experienced
The drive by the Botswana government through the relevant ministry to construct new schools, train teachers and create a multi-level school system has seen very impressive results, over the past five decades.
According to data recently released by Statistics Botswana, secondary school teachers in Botswana are mainly citizens accounting for 96 percent of the total teachers compared to 4 percent of non-citizen teachers. The highlight from these statistics is that Botswana is doing very well in churning out professionals in the education sector. However, there is still a gap especially in certain subjects at secondary school level. At some point, Botswana is said to have experienced an oversupply of secondary school teachers in subjects like social studies, while suffering acute shortages in other subjects like sciences, and business studies among others.
Most expatriate teachers are employed in private schools mainly on the basis of qualification, experience and performance. Kamau in his research about 2 decades ago found that most head teachers for private schools were expatriates, and the foreign teachers constituted more than 50 percent of the staff. The numbers have reduced significantly as indicated by the findings by Stats Botswana.
However, the reasons given then, are still the same now where expatriates are said to be more qualified, and more effective in delivery. It is important to note that expatriates are employed on a contract basis and therefore are under more pressure to prove themselves and keep their jobs than the locals who are employed on permanent and pensionable contracts. Understandably, private schools are also under pressure to produce results considering the high fees they charge as a way to meet their costs and maintain certain standards.
Research is key
The significance of this information is that economic participants may look at these statistics and try to fit or feed off the value chain thus maximize on their economic usefulness in the country. The numbers provided by Statistics Botswana come from research work and are vital for future investors who need to know the potential demand patterns in the country. The importance of research cannot be overlooked!
We hope that this article was insightful and that it demonstrated to some extent the importance of market research or data in business decision-making. As stated above, we offer market research and data analysis through surveys, feasibility studies, polls, among other data-related services.
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