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The Growth of Private Secondary Schools in Malawi: Its Implications on the Registration and Quality Monitoring Systems

The purpose of the study was to understand and describe the current system of registration and quality monitoring in private secondary schools. It was also to explore and come up with the alternative strategies for improving the systems so that they have the desired impact in contributing to quality education. The population of the study was purposefully selected, composed of 14 participants holding roles such as Proprietors /Head teachers of private secondary schools, District Education Manager, Education Methods Advisors and executive committee member of Private Schools Association of Malawi (PRlSAM). In-depth interviews were conducted requiring participants to express the extent to which they are involved and have some knowledge in the registration and quality monitoring of private secondary schools in Lilongwe Education Districts, what they see as problems and how the systems can be improved. The growth of private schools is viewed as a necessity, assisting the government in providing access to secondary education. Long delays, regulations not well published and reinforced, problems of resources, schools not meeting the standards are some of the problems of registration. Inadequate personnel and transport have been identified as major problems of quality monitoring. Proprietors and head teachers feel that there is lack of follow-up visits to the schools and quality monitoring is not done. Advisors point out that quality monitoring is rarely done but lack of resources is the major problem. Most schools are unregistered because they do not meet the basic minimum requirements. Therefore, increasing human and material resources, publicizing and reinforcing the regulations are some of the alternative strategies that have been suggested.
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