Curriculum Implementation Strategies of Education Standards Officers in Choma District of Zambia: A Critique of their Effectiveness

  • Innocent Mutale Mulenga University of Zambia
  • Eugine Mooya University of Zambia
Keywords: Strategies, Monitoring and Evaluation, Education Standards Officers, Curriculum Implementation


Effective curriculum implementation by teachers is recognised as a lynchpin for achieving educational goals of any education system that leads to improved learner outcomes. In this article, authors make a critique of the effectiveness of Education Standards Officers’ (ESOs) curriculum implementation strategies that were used to support teachers’ effective teaching and learning in Choma district of Zambia. They set the arguement by riding on the six premises of Fullan’s curriculum implementation model against the contemporary backdrop and knowledge that ESOs monitoring and evaluation roles are critical to effective curriculum implementation in schools. In this qualitative study, researchers identified and critiqued strategies that were employed by ESOs in the contemporary milieu of Choma district. Using interview guides and focus group discussions guides, data was collected from head teachers and teachers in five, public secondary schools. Additionally, interview guides were also used to collect information from ESOs themselves. Findings pointed to the fact that curriculum implementation strategies such as formation of subject associations, follow-up visits and the recommendations from ESOs and the use of common schemes of work in schools did not yield desired results in terms of supporting teachers to improve their teaching based on what ESOs identified as areas of need during their school visits. In fact, it was also noted that ESOs missed a golden opportunity to practice clinical supervision and to make lesson demonstrations as they interacted with teachers. Arising from the factors which led to this scenario, researchers make two main recommendations. They first and foremost suggest that the Ministry of Education needs to provide sufficient funding to aspects of curriculum implementation at both the district and school levels. Researchers also recommend that ESOs should consult teachers and their administrators as they come up with curriculum implementation strategies in order to have them aligned with the realities of the schools.