The Department of Historical Studies in the Faculty of Humanities recently embarked on an outreach programme where staff members visited different High Schools in Lesotho. The purpose of these trips was primarily to raise awareness about the significance of History as a subject and discipline for education in Lesotho. The Department had noticed a decline in the recognition of History in High Schools. This was primarily because the public does not know a lot about the significance of History and thus have lost interest in it. King Solomon once said “knowledge is of more value than gold”.
On the 17th August 2022, the Department visited schools in Leribe and Berea districts. These schools were Holy Family High School, Hlotse High School, Sacred Heart High School and Sechaba High School. Members also visited Thaba-Tseka and Mohale High Schools on the 18th August 2022.
Members of the Department gave brief presentations about their different fields. Dr. Chakawa and Mr. Mphezulu Mphezulu gave a background about the field of history and its career opportunities; Ms Bopane Rampeta as a heritage and cultural expert, gave a career guidance in her field; Ms ‘Masemote Molale presented career opportunities in her field of anthropology; while Mrs Nthabiseng Mokoena-Mokhali briefed learners about the different majors and programmes offered in the Faculty of Humanities, as well as career opportunities in her career as an archaeologist.
The presentations were well received by both teachers and learners in these different High Schools. Principals in these different schools expressed their deepest gratitude to have members of the National University of Lesotho paying them a visit, motivating and giving career guidance to their learners. History teachers at Thaba-Tseka High School specifically pleaded with the NUL Department of Historical Studies to have a role in transforming and decolonising the current High school History curriculum. They further encouraged experts in the Department to write and publish books that may be used by learners.
While still in Thaba-Tseka, the District Education Officer expressed her concern about the decline in the teaching of History in high schools. She encouraged members of the Department to have influence over how High school teachers should teach History. She expressed the same concerns as teachers, that the current History curriculum does not reflect Lesotho’s or African histories and this should become one of the areas of priority.
The Department plans to continue with these outreach initiatives to schools in the Qacha’s Nek and Quthing districts.