School appeals for proper classroom
Situated more than 100 kilometres east of Rundu, Shinunga Junior Primary School faces numerous challenges that hamper effective teaching and learning.
The school has only one teacher who is in charge of educating the 28 students in grades one to three.
Last week, Namibian Sun paid a visit to the school while Stephanus Shintango was teaching a math lesson.
The learners hail from nearby marginalised communities, and it quickly became clear that the school is in dire need of assistance.
Not one of the learners wore a complete school uniform, and most were either barefoot or wearing worn-out sandals.
At 10:00, one of the learners ran from the class to ring the bell – it was break time.
The soft porridge provided through the school feeding programme was prepared, and the learners moved towards the women from the community who were filling their plates.
The learners eat the porridge with their hands as their parents cannot afford to buy them utensils.
"The food is provided by the government. The learners do have plates, but there is no spoon. Like I said, the parents of the learners are not financially stable to buy them spoons," Shintango said.
As for the other challenges the school is facing, Shintango said that the money they receive from the government is not sufficient.
Because of the small number of learners at the school, it is difficult for the school to purchase adequate learning material and other basic necessities.
He added that last year, the school began constructing a corrugated iron structure, but it has not yet been completed due to a lack of funds to buy materials.
"As you can see, the structure is incomplete. It needs a door and windows for ventilation, and cement for the floor. The structure is small, but what can we do if the school and the parents are struggling to raise funds? We really need help," Shintango said.
He also pointed out that the thatched-roof classroom in which he teaches is not safe for the learners, as snakes can easily enter at any point during a lesson.
He said the snakes are drawn to the classroom by the mice, which are also causing havoc by destroying items such as books stored in the classroom.
Hence his appeal for good Samaritans to assist with the construction of a proper structure so that everyone's safety can be assured and books and other materials are safety stored away.
Another challenge is the lack of a proper fence because currently cows, goats and donkeys make their way into the school premises and disturb lessons.
"We are calling on good Samaritans to assist the school in any way possible so effective learning and teaching takes place," he said.