Senamiso Midzi, Lwazi Sibanda, Joyce Mathwasa


Quality in education has become a cause for concern to every stakeholder in education. The study sought to assess the provision of quality education in low-cost private secondary schools in Bulawayo Metropolitan Province. The study adopted the interpretivist paradigm in qualitative approach, using a case study design. Semi-structured interviews and document analysis were used for collecting thematically analysed data from purposively sampled four school heads and six teachers from low-cost private secondary schools. The study established that in pursuit for quality education, selected schools employed qualified teachers who engage in continuous professional development programmes to sharpen their teaching skills. The findings revealed that the schools understudy are making efforts to offer practical science and computer lessons using the limited resources to ensure the provision of quality education. It emerged that selected schools use e-learning and multimedia resources which arouse learners’ interests and increase the retention rates. It came out that the schools understudy have environmental clubs which work together with school health departments in attending to sanitary issues. Whilst selected schools practiced heterogeneous grouping, the findings revealed that learners with physical disabilities are not enrolled in those schools due to lack of appropriate physical facilities and there are no teachers with relevant expertise to teach learners with special needs. The study revealed that the Ministry of Primary and Secondary Education provided guidelines in the form of policy documents and circulars to monitor the provision of quality education in the selected schools. Despite the efforts made by low-cost secondary schools in providing quality education, the study found that high staff turnover is negatively affecting the quality of education due to lack of continuity in learning. The findings indicated that inadequate learning resources and infrastructure such as libraries, computer and science laboratories, internet services, and lack of teachers with special needs expertise adversely affected the provision of quality education. The study concludes that lack of financial resources is a hindrance in the provision of quality education in low-cost secondary schools. The study recommends that a comparative study on provision of quality education should be conducted in private trust secondary schools.

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