01 Nov 2018 18:00pm
RUACANA, 01 NOV (NAMPA) Permanent Secretary (PS) of the Ministry of Education, Arts and Culture, Sanet Steenkamp has expressed concern that only one per cent of San children complete secondary education in the country.
Speaking at Ruacana in the Omusati Region whilst officially receiving a new five-classroom block sponsored and handed over by the Pupkewitz Foundation at Tjihozu Combined School (CS) on Thursday, Steenkamp said the San children drop out of school due to cultural reasons.
She indicated that child marriage, which lead to teenage pregnancy, is one of the reasons a San girl drops out of school to take the responsibility of looking after the baby.
She went on to say that San children get bullied, labelled and called names by some learners and teachers, resulting in increased school dropouts in the San community.
Steenkamp also appealed to people to stop exploiting the San and Ovahimba children for personal gain or gratification.
We cannot allow marginalised children to be used to solicit donations, yet the donation is not making an impact in their lives, Steenkamp stated.
The PS at the same time appealed to the education fraternity in the Omusati Region and the county at large to ensure that children from the marginalised groups also have access to quality education and are flourishing.
Pupkewitz Foundation Chief Executive Officer, Meryl Barry, at the handing over function said the foundation invested some N.dollars 1.7 million in the construction of the classroom block to help address the shortage of facilities to accommodate the children.
The Pupkewitz Foundation is a charitable arm of Pupkewitz Holdings. Barry revealed that the Pupkewitz Group of Companies for the past three years budgeted over N.dollars 18.3 million for charitable development, of which 72 per cent was spent in education.
Principal of the school, Lucia Shipiki told Nampa on the sidelines of the event that the school was established in 1996 with 144 learners from Grade 1-3 and four teachers.
Currently, it has a population of 1 201 learners in pre-primary to Grade 10, a total 33 teachers, secretary and two cleaners.