Teachers share rooms with learners

18 February 2020 | Education

Some learners at Sikarosompo Primary School in Kavango West have opted to rather walk between four to 20 kilometres to and from school every day than stay in the community hostel, which is in a deplorable state.

The situation has also resulted in teachers sharing their makeshift rooms with pupils.

The mud on the two hostel structures, one for boys and girls, has been completely washed off by rain, exposing the learners to cold and wet nights.

The situation has resulted in teachers, who have erected temporary structures at the school, accommodating learners in their rooms, especially during the current rainy season.

Ten of the 11 learners accommodated at the hostel are boys who have been divided into groups and sleep in the rooms of male teachers, while the only girl shares a room with the one of the female teachers.

Sikarosompo Primary School is situated about 30 kilometres south of Nkurenkuru.

The school has enrolled 212 learners for the 2020 academic year. The number of learners in the hostel decreased from over 20 last year to 11 this year, and the state of the accommodation is said to be the reason for the decline.

Acting principal Miriam Kaihoto told Namibian Sun the learners who have opted to walk the long distances to and from school are from the Suni, Naimanya and Karave villages.

Kaihoto said the hostel, which was constructed in 2015, is in a very bad state, which is why the teachers saw it fit to accommodate the learners in their structures until the hostel is renovated.

“The hostel is in a bad state and the learners are not sleeping there at the moment. They have been divided into groups and they are sharing rooms with the teachers, a situation which has compromised the privacy of those teachers,” she said.

Kaihoto said the school offers grades 0 to 7 and is the only facility that can enrol learners from the Ngava, Naimanya, Suni, Nge and Karave junior primary schools, which means that demand for placement is high, despite learners having to endure long distances to school.

Apart from the state of the hostel, some parents are unable to afford the N$150 per term fee, which caters for the food learners eat during their stay, which they cook for themselves.





Kaihoto said the learners only eat one proper meal per day, which is supper.

“Apart from the food the learners eat at school, which falls under the school feeding programme, they only eat one proper meal per day, which is the supper they cook for themselves in the evening,” she said.

Supper is mainly comprised of porridge and fish.

Kaihoto said the state of the hostel partly contributes to the tardiness of learners and has an effect on the enrolment of learners at the school.

“There are parents who want their children to school here, but the distance is a challenge. Some have even opted to take their children as far as Nkurenkuru where they will live with relatives,” she said.

Kaihoto called on Good Samaritans to assist the school to renovate the hostel and provide the learners with food, cosmetics as well as beds and mattresses.

“The learners need all the help they can get. They are coming from poor households and their parents are unable to cater for the needs of their children. We will welcome any kind of assistance that will help the learners,” she said.

KENYA KAMBOWE

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