Updated Zimbabwe Curriculum Framework


After a process of nationwide consultations, on Friday 25 September 2014 the Ministry of Primary and Secondary Education announced the release of a draft education curriculum, meant to update and introduce major changes in the school system in the country.

With effect from the 10th of January 2017, the Ministry has started implementation of this updated school curriculum. Implementation is guided by the Curriculum Framework for Primary and Secondary Education 2015-2022 (pdf). According to the implementation matrix (insert link to Implementation Modalities page here), January 2017 marks Phase Two of implementation for selected classes.

The updated curriculum is meant to modernise the education system, at the infant, junior and secondary level, so they are in line with global trends and with modern technologies. The Curriculum Framework prepares graduates of the education system to have the following skills: critical thinking, problem-solving abilities, leadership skills, good communication skills, team building and technological skills.

The Framework outlines in detail learning areas for the three learning levels. These include areas such as Agriculture, Languages, Information Communication Technology, Science, Maths, Science, Statistics and Physics, all which are going to be introduced in school at an earlier stage. Feedback from public consultations and from experts has strongly suggested that learning areas like Mathematics, Science and Technology should be taught from Early Child Development.

Below is further information about the updated curriculum.

More Information about the Curriculum Framework, 2015 to 2022

What is the Curriculum Framework?

The Ministry of Primary and Secondary Education remains committed to fulfilling the potential of learners in Zimbabwe. Emphasis will be given to providing improved access and quality education to every learner. This will subsequently contribute to bringing about meaningful transformation in the lives of ordinary Zimbabweans.

The Curriculum Framework for Primary and Secondary Education (2015-2022) provides a medium – to – long term policy direction to make these improvements in the education system. It establishes a clear sequence of priorities to ensure that the return on investment in education is optimised in terms of the results that matter most, which are learner outcomes.

The updated Curriculum provides today’s generation with relevant knowledge, skills, attitudes and that will drive the country‘s socio-economic growth and prosperity going forward.

Why Curriculum Reform?

Reforming or updating the school curriculum is a common and good thing that is done regularly in many progressive countries. It is important to realise that the Ministry’s efforts to review the curriculum was a result of numerous factors. Worth to mention are:

The agrarian reform since 1998/9
Developments in ICTs and the global economy
The new Constitution which came into effect in 2013, as well as
Recommendations of the Presidential Commission of Inquiry into Education and Training (CIET) (1999)

Major Post-Independence Reforms

The Presidential Commission of Inquiry into Education and Training (CIET) was set up in 1998. The CIET Report came out in 1999.

CIET Findings

The findings of Commission were that the Curriculum:

Lacked national values/philosophy to guide learners
Did not extol the virtues of self-reliance and entrepreneurship/enterprise and business skills
Offered little to develop the learners’ natural talents and aptitudes
Did not aggressively promote the teaching of Science, Maths, Technology, Vocational and Technical subjects and indigenous languages
Did not place adequate premium on Early Childhood Development education and non-formal education
Was examination oriented, and summative at that
Above all, the report recommended the establishment of a Teaching Professions Council to monitor and uphold professionalism in the sector

The Curriculum Review Process

Since CIET in 1999 it became increasingly self-evident that the curriculum required reviewing.

Prior to the review, as a Ministry we:

Prepared a Handbook on Curriculum Review
Designed a questionnaire for data collection
Developed a Training Manual
Set up a Technical Working Group, which included Key Ministries
Recruited Team Leaders
Mobilised resources from Government & Partners

Photos of Ministry outreach and consultations here (see attachments)

Nationwide Consultations

We held nationwide consultations with, and using the following platforms:

The School level
The District level
The Provincial level
The National level
Breakfast meetings
Written submissions
Print / Electronic Media
Mai Chisamba Show
Special Interest Groups
Uniformed Forces
Prisons and correctional services
Zimbabwe Schools Examination Council (Zimsec)
Sport, Arts & Culture Ministry
Churches, through EFZ, CCZ
Staff Associations and Teachers Associations
Industry and Commerce: ZNNC, CZI,
VID and Traffic Safety Council of Zimbabwe
As well as other entities

Issues that Emerged

The major sentiments and issues emerging from the consultations are found in the detailed Narrative Report (insert link to Narrative Report here), which was prepared, and which is available. These include:

Promotion of skills for enterprise development
Promotion of indigenous languages
The need for an educational philosophy
Promotion of the teaching of the Sciences, Mathematics, Technology, Technical/Vocational subjects and ICT
Promotion of sport, arts and culture
The role of the teacher and the learner to be revisited
Need for a robust system of assessment to track learner progress
Strengthening Early Childhood Development (ECD)
Strengthening monitoring and evaluation
Capacity development of teachers
School infrastructure development
Greater community involvement

Data gathered from consultations was used to compile the Narrative Report (insert link to Implementation Modalities page here) which formed the basis for drafting the Zimbabwe Curriculum Blueprint.

What else informed Review of the Curriculum?

While acknowledging the CIET recommendations, the Curriculum Framework has taken on aboard the human capital, social, political, economic and technological transformations in both in the country and globally.
The impact of the land reform and the need to cultivate a patriotic citizenry also enriched the framework
The curriculum had also to reflect the national efforts as enshrined in the national economic policy, the Zimbabwe’s home grown Constitution and Regional and International Treaties to which the country is a signatory
The expansion in the capabilities of information and communication technologies and the emergence of an information-driven economy underpin the need for the development of new skill sets that enable citizens to live and work competitively in the global village

Approval of the Curriculum Framework

The Ministry then developed a zero draft Curriculum Framework for Primary and Secondary Education to guide learning and teaching during the next seven years: 2015-2022.
The new framework was approved by Cabinet on 22 September 2015 and is now being implemented.

Aspects of the Curriculum

Aims of the Curriculum

The Curriculum Framework is driven by the following aims:

To promote and cherish the Zimbabwean identity, in particular the following:

Awareness of heritage, history, culture and traditions
Inter-cultural understanding and tolerance
Self-respect and respect for others (Ubuntu/Unhu/Vumunhu)
Being open, receptive, assertive and optimistic

To prepare learners for life and work in a largely agro-based economy and an increasingly globalised and competitive environment. this is with respect to, inter alia:

Life skills such as:

Team work
Work and enterprise skills
Personal development and Health

To foster life-long learning in line with the opportunities and challenges of the knowledge society through:

Embracing ICTs and e-learning
Flexibility and adaptability
Critical thinking and creativity

To prepare learners for participatory citizenship, peace and sustainable development with respect to:

Rights, duties and responsibilities
Tolerance and mutual respect
Management of diversity, differences and conflicts
Preserving and protecting the environment and resources
National unity

To prepare and orient learners for participation, leadership and voluntary service through:

Encouraging self-discipline and sense of achievement and fairness
Fostering joy in serving others and the country
Developing a sense of accountability and commitment to others
Fostering a sense of responsibility, transparency and integrity
Preparing for a vocation

Principles underpinning the Curriculum

The Ministry of Primary and Secondary Education cherishes the following principles:

life-long learning
equity and fairness
gender sensitivity
respect (Ubuntu/Unhu/Vumunhu)

Pillars of The Curriculum Framework

The reform process in primary and secondary education rests on five key pillars namely:

The legal and regulatory framework
Teacher capacity development
Teacher professional standards
Infrastructure development and
The Centre for Education Research, Innovation and Development (CERID)

Learner Exit Profiles

The Curriculum Framework prepares graduates of the education system to have the following exit profiles:

Critical thinking
Communication and team building
Has attained knowledge in the following areas:
Basic literacy and numeracy
Business and financial literacy
Mastery of specific subject content
Appreciates and cherishes national identity and:
Manifests patriotism;
Recognizes and values national symbols
Voluntarily engages in participatory citizenship
Has the following values:
Has the following attitudes and dispositions:
Self-initiative and enterprising
Ability to plan and organize

Learning Areas Per Level

To see the learning areas for each level go to the section, Implementation Modalities (insert link to Implementation Modalities page here), or download them here (insert link to downloadable pdf of learning areas here)

More Information About The Curriculum

You can download the Summary of the Curriculum Framework here
A list of frequently asked questions (FAQs) on the updated curriculum can be downloaded here
Some presentations on the Education in Zimbabwe and the updated Curriculum can also be downloaded on the Downloads page