The National Examination Council of Tanzania (NECTA) has been advised to abandon labelling subjects as 'subsidiary' because it results in poor concentration by students.
A lecturer with Tanzania Public Service College Alfred Nchimbi made the remarks to 'The Guardian' over the weekend at the closure of a three-day National Conference on Education in Tanzania organised by the School of Education of the University of Dar es Salaam.
He said subjects should be given the same status as they are equally important to the students.
Nchimbi cited General Studies, saying it was a cross-cutting subject, and Basic Applied Mathematics which was useful to students studying economics.
He said the designated pass mark for the subjects was ‘subsidiary’ and 'failure', adding that the situation resulted in poor attention by the students on the subjects because they will not change anything in their performance.
Nchimbi said it was high time NECTA abandoned the system and treated the subjects like other principal subjects, adding that a subject such as Religious Studies, which did not feature in any combination, was treated as a principal subject.
Meanwhile, the participants to the conference recommended that there should be rightful candidates joining teachers colleges so as to get competent teachers to improve the quality of education.
The participants also recommended that the government should give Early Childhood Education new impetus with a view to mainstreaming and expanding the access to quality ECE programmes in the school system.
Reading the recommendations, conference convener Dr. Kitila Mkumbo said there was a need to reinvigorate and strengthen the provision of complementary basic education in Tanzania in order to provide opportunities for children out of school.
Dr. Mkumbo said there was also a need for close collaboration between and among key players in developing and implementing education reforms.
He said the participants had observed that many education reform programmess were uncoordinated and were not wholly evidence-based, as a result many programmes ran parallel and/or contradictory to each other.