Pupils taught in the open at top five school

Suffer the little children: Scenes from Duma Boko' visit on Friday. PIC KEBOFHE MATHE
Suffer the little children: Scenes from Duma Boko' visit on Friday. PIC KEBOFHE MATHE

Pupils at one of the top performing primary schools, Masa Primary School in Gaborone are learning under trees, in congested classrooms and dilapidated buildings, Mmegi established during a tour of the school by the area MP Duma Boko Friday.

Some classroom doors and windows are in bad condition while the toilets are leaky and smelly.  

On Friday UDC leader Duma Boko visited the school where the school head Rosemary Koontse said seven classes are taught under trees because there is a shortage of classrooms.

“Masa is one of the biggest primary schools in Gaborone looking at the number of students that we are admitting. We have 1,066 pupils.

She said the situation becomes terrible during rainy days because classes have to be combined.

“Seven classes that are taught outside include Standard 2, 3, 5 and 6. The other challenge in our school was supposed to be piloting, but it never worked because parents are working and could not bring their children around 11am,” Koontse said.

The school head also expressed concern that her teachers are forced to teach a class, which has 40 or more children while a class teacher ratio requires that a teacher should teach 30 pupils. 

She complained that they were provided with low quality furniture, which is already becoming worn out.

“The furniture that we were provided with last year is of low quality and it is already giving us problems. The tables and chairs are breaking easily. The other issue is stationery, which we have long awaited from the council since the schools opened, but until now we haven’t received it, ” she said.

Koontse said the school needs stationery and other academic related materials.

She said the money that they are given as a way of doing temporary maintenance in schools called “Handy Money”, which amounts to P10,000 is not enough.

She said unlike other primary schools, her school classrooms do not have air conditioners which becomes a challenge when it  is very hot.

Despite Masa being one of the performing schools in the top five yearly, it is being neglected according to the school head.

A schoolteacher, Mosepedi Kuku Magono said what pains teachers most is that they are not even taken for further studies.

“In other schools that are performing like us, teachers are taken to schools yearly for advancing. We do apply like other teachers but we do not become fortunate. We want to be competitive and deliver accordingly,” said Magono.

She said progression of teachers in their school is very low. She appealed to the area MP to help them to find companies for a programme called Adopt-A-School since those companies can help a school to improve results. 

Meanwhile Duma Boko said he shall take all education problems that are reported to him by teachers to the relevant ministries to be addressed.

“I have realised that all education problems are the same in all four primary and two junior community schools that I have visited. I shall make a report to Ministry of Education and Skills Development,” Boko said.

He promised teachers that he would keep on checking their schools to find out whether their problems have been addressed.

Editor's Comment
What about employees in private sector?

How can this be achieved when there already is little care about the working conditions of those within the private sector employ?For a long time, private sector employees have been neglected by their employers, not because they cannot do better to care for them, but because they take advantage of government's laxity when it comes to protecting and advocating for public sector employees, giving the cue to employers within the private sector...

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