25 Jul 2013 06:10
By Paulus Shiku
KEETMANSHOOP, 25 JUL (NAMPA) None of the 267 Government primary schools in the Kavango Region have hostels to accommodate learners, who are instead forced to walk more than 10 kilometres to their schools.
Kavango Regional Director of Education Kalihonda Mathew Kudumo presented this information at a national hostels management and National School-Feeding Programme (NSFP) workshop underway in Keetmanshoop on Wednesday.
Our vision is that as soon as we have money, we will construct a hostel for each of the 11 education circuits in the region. We hope to continue doing that until we have a hostel for every school, Kudumo told Nampa shortly after his presentation.
The Kavango Region has 327 Government schools all-together. Of the 60 secondary schools, only 15 have hostels.
This situation has led to learners camping out at most of the schools in order for them to get to school on time.
Another challenge he mentioned is the overcrowding of the few available hostels at secondary schools, saying the situation forces learners to sleep on floors.
One of the overcrowded hostels is at the Kandjimi Murangi Secondary School, where the capacity is 450 learners, but the schools hostel now accommodates 455 learners.
The Ndiyona Combined School can only accommodate 200 learners, but has been forced to take on 67 extra learners.
The Martin Ndumba Combined School is supposed to accommodate 192 learners, but now has 221, while the Himarwa Iithete Secondary School with a capacity of 256, now has 360 learners.
Kudumo said most of the school buildings in the region are also dilapidated, while some schools in the rural areas are in need of proper buildings as they use traditional huts as classrooms.
These challenges have been there before the introduction of free primary education, and it became worse this year when free education was put in place. So far, the Ministry of Education is doing their best to improve the situation, the education director noted.
Representatives from the Ministry of Educations head office in Windhoek are also attending the workshop in order for them to note down all the challenges and suggestions presented by regional representatives.
All 13 regions are being represented by education directors and hostel staff members.
The event started on Monday, and ends Friday.