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The Importance of Female Teachers
In all of Malawi and in particular the Kasungu district, it is very rare to find more female teachers than male teachers per school. Despite female teachers being inadequate in primary and secondary schools, their presence brings joy to students, especially girls.
They are our advisers apart from being our role models" said Harriet Chenembu a pupil at Lingadzi primary school while pointing at Zelifa Nguluwe a female teacher at the same school. Having a female teacher at a primary and secondary school is really important because in Kasungu most girls are usually left home to do household chores and so when the communities see these female teachers they also encourage their daughters to work hard and become teachers one day.
There are some schools where for more than eight years they have never had a female teacher posted on them. Kalimira primary school is one of these schools where the pupils at the school had no chance of being taught by a female teacher for more than five years. I personally feel pity for such schools because females are like mothers and so have a motherly love which they give to these girls. According to Malawian culture, girls will only express their concerns and problems freely to female teachers rather than male teachers.
Female teachers are important to the girls and the community as well because when the communities see them they also feel that women can also be leaders and can assist in the development of the area. Some parents even send their daughters to these female teachers for counseling where they feel not open to them.
As I visited some girls in primary and secondary schools, most of the girls said what they like most with their female teachers is their way of teaching, dressing and their presence among men and they want to be the same too."