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Concern Over Zimbabwe School Exam Costs Remains Despite Loan Scheme

Some parents and teachers have welcomed the government's extension of the deadline for registering for school exams, but said extending loans to students who can’t afford to take the tests and limiting them to six subjects falls short of a solution to the crisis.

The government last week put off the deadline for exams registration to October 16, and said it would allow students and families to pay the cost of exams over three months.

The Zimbabwe Teachers Association said the government steps were positive, but added that people taking out the exam loans needed to fully understand them.

More than 70% of students nationwide did not register for the November examinations due to the cost, unions representing teachers said. At US$10 per exam, full set of eight ordinary-level exams would cost US$80, rising to US$160 for the same number of advanced exams.

Progressive Teachers Union of Zimbabwe National Coordinator Oswald Madziwa told Studio 7 reporter Jonga Kandemiiri that the government has not acted in students' best interest.

More reports from VOA's Studio 7 for Zimbabwe...