Precious is an IT Teacher at Zingwangwa Secondary School, a partner school in Blantyre, Malawi. IT Schools Africa donated two school IT labs in 2014/2015 and more recently started an Entrepreneurial Digital Skills Course for students through our local partner Computers For Malawian Schools (CFMS).
IT Schools Africa has been instrumental in helping Precious achieve his award and improving digital education at the school. We recently caught up with Precious to find out more about this prestigious award and what it means to him and the wider school community.
“I am so proud to win this award because we were competing against very good schools and I have overcome a lot of challenges. My students and fellow teachers have renewed energy and motivation and will never look down on themselves again.“
Precious Majoni, IT teacher, Zingwangwa School, Blantyre, Malawi
I was awarded the Best Subject Teacher Award 2021 for Computer Studies, presented by the Ministry of Education (South West Education Division) in Malawi. In addition to teaching the curriculum-based course focussing on the Microsoft applications, this award was in recognition of achieving the best Malawi School Certificate of Education (MCSE) results in computer studies that the school has ever produced.
Furthermore, the new Entrepreneurial Digital Skills Course incorporating Microsoft Publisher, Adobe Photoshop and video editing, developed and implemented with local partner Computers For Malawian Schools (CFMS) and IT Schools Africa (ITSA), is transforming digital skills education. This course is quite unique for Malawian schools and teaches real life, useful skills enabling these students to generate an income and improve their lives.
Tell us a little more about IT teaching in school and how learning digital skills helps students.
ICT is a compulsory subject up to the age of 14 and is optional for older students. IT is a game changer for students’ education, supporting learning across all subjects and accessing global information. Developing digital skills has enabled the students to increase their chances for internship, employment and access to university.
Could you share more details on your new Entrepreneurial Digital Skills Course?
There is a demand for digital design skills such as Publisher, Photoshop and Premier Pro in Malawi. These skills enable the students to generate income and help their families financially. We are seeing higher enrolment for computer studies, more engagement from students and new energy in teaching amongst the teachers. Our first cohort of 48 students last year benefitted so much we are repeating the course now for a further 70 students. We have also worked with local companies, such as Hallmark to ensure the modules are covering all areas that are marketable in the industry.
How much does schooling cost in Malawi?
Primary education is free in Malawi but secondary schooling has to be paid for. Students’ families have to pay MWK 33,000 per year (which converts to approximately £30 per year), sadly many families struggle to pay school fees.
How do you handle the challenges of internet and power?
We do our best under the circumstances. We do not have access to regular internet but we manage. In case of a blackout, I always prepare two sets of lessons, I can teach a theory lesson if this happens.
Thank you Precious - you are an inspiration to your fellow teachers and students!