Mount Gese and Mahyoro primary school, that are located in the newly created Karangura sub county closed last week after pupils stopped attending classes.
Two schools implementing Universal Primary Education- UPE in Kabarole district closed due to lack of teachers. Mount Gese and Mahyoro primary school, that are located in the newly created Karangura sub county closed last week after pupils stopped attending classes. Mount Gese had 600 pupils, but there were only four teachers. It was constructed by Save the Children fund, two years ago to serve pupils in the mountainous area.
However since last year, the school has been experiencing shortage of teachers and since the beginning of the second term, 80% of the pupils have never been taught. Some of the children have now resorted to working in stone quarries, while others are engaged in domestic work. Atanus Kampesa, the head teacher of the school says that the school administration decided to temporarily close the school after pupils stopped turning up for classes, because of inadequate teaching staff.
Atanus says that he has on several occasions requested the district education department to send more teachers to the school, but there hasn’t been any response. According to Atinus, it is only people born in the area who can work at the school, because they are used to the terrain. Majority of the residents in Karangura are Bakonzo.
//Cue in: “school is having only four teachers.”
Cue out: “…in born people to work there.”//
At Mahyoro Primary school, there are 650 pupils, with only four teachers. Pupils in P3, P4, P5 and P7 have never been taught since the beginning of the second term. Celestine Baluku, the deputy head teacher says that there is no need for the pupils to attend classes yet there are no teachers. He says that of the teachers who were recruited last year to teach at the school, reported for only a week and have never returned.
Baluku says that the lack of teachers, forced the school to temporarily employ senior four drop outs, but parents rejected them because they didn’t have qualifications. The lack of teachers has also had an impact on the performance of pupils in national examinations. Statistics at the school indicate all the 350 pupils who sat for PLE last year passed in the third grade.
Gerald Bwambale, a parent whose children were studying at Mount Gese says that he has no option but wait until the school has teachers. He says that he can’t afford to pay school fees for his three daughters in a private school. According to Bwambale, he has mobilized parents to write a petition to the Ministry of Education and Sports.
However the District Education Officer, Patrick Rwakaikara says that the district has nothing it can do. He says that the district recruited ten teachers to teach at Mount Gese and Mahyoro but they have never reported. He says that the government should instead give incentives to teachers who work in hard to reach areas, so that it attracts other teachers to work there.
mount gesa primary school
karangura sub county
universal primary school