The impact of Community studies in Primary Schools on Sustainable Human Development: The case of selected Primary Schools of Mwinilunga District in Zambia

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Mandra, Meleki
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This study was undertaken to investigate the Impact of Community Studies in Primary Schools on Sustainable Human Development in Mwinilunga District of Zambia. The researcher employed both qualitative and quantitative research strategies to collect data from 160 respondents through Questionnaires, interviews (Focus Group Discussions and one-on one) and observation research methods. The sample comprised 8 school administrators, 80 teachers, 24 parents and 48 grade seven pupils drawn from the eight government primary schools of Mwinilunga District. The head teachers and teachers responded to both the questionnaires and a one-on-one interview guide. The pupils responded to Focus Group Discussion questions while the parents were interviewed using semi-structured interview schedules. The observation schedule was used to record Sustainable Human Development activities that took place in schools.The main findings of the study were that through community studies, the learners were imparted with economic and productive skills. However, these skills lacked quality and sustainability due to the fact that many primary school teachers were not adequately qualified in apprenticeship skills. Furthermore, the pupils did not take community study lessons seriously since these lessons were not examined by the Examinations Council of Zambia.The findings also showed that lack of quality primary education provision had negative impacts on Sustainable Human Development. The impacts included: pupils’ inability to find a well paying job after completion of primary education, pupils responsible for breaking down the windows and desks in the school, the pupils burnt the litter within the school surroundings during class time, and the pupils destroyed the mango and orange trees in the school.Based on these findings, the study made some recommendations. The prominent ones were that there was need to increase funding, make community study lessons examinable, include HIV and AIDS, Gender and Environmental issues in the curriculum and provide enough teaching and learning materials for the localization of the curriculum. Furthermore, the study recommended that there was need to train teachers in economic and productive skills so that they could teach effectively.
Elementary School Teaching , Sustainable Development-Zambia , Education, Elementary-Zambia