Teachers deployed to Sichongo primary school in Lupane have reportedly left the school due to poor infrastructure at the school.
Speaking during a ward 25 community meeting held at Chimwara area on Friday, a villager Evidence Makhetho said when teachers are deployed to the school they don’t show up because of poor infrastructure.
The school is said to have four teachers at the moment, with two temporary teachers. The teachers` cottages are in bad state.
She said the teacher only called them later to tell them they were not coming back due to poor infrastructure.
Makhetho said they are appealing for assistance with building material so that they can develop the school and attract teachers to stay at the school and teach their children.
“The thing is that we do not have building material or equipment to renovate our school. We are appealing for that assistance so that if teachers get employed, they can be able to stay and teach our children. There are a few teachers who manage to stay here and teach our children”.
“The availability of teachers is going to ensure that our girl child stays at school because at the moment when there are few teachers, most of them are not attending schools, they spend the day fetching water and assisting us parents with home chores,” she said.
Makhetho said children walk about 14 km to and back from school.
“Since we have shortage of water, at times as parents we tell our girl child not to go to school because there are no teachers, the school is very far about 7km, with time they end up volunteering themselves not to go to school and assist us with home chores, thus why we are appealing for assistance to develop our school,” said Makhetho
In addition, Ward 25 councillor, Khawulani Muzamba added that the school has one classroom block and they need more.
“As the council we are trying to develop the school, as you can see we have one block that we are trying to build but we are appealing for assistance with building material such as cement and bricks to build classroom blocks and a cottage,” said Cllr Muzamba.
“We also do not have a water source at the school especially now that we are facing Covid-19, if we can also get assistance with a borehole at the school, even if it’s a solar powered one,” she said.
Contacted for a comment, Matabeleland North Provincial Education Director, Jabulani Mpofu said the school is a satellite school which is still under construction.
“Soon we will be registering these schools once they meet minimal standards put by government,” said Mpofu.
He said teachers’ accommodation are a priority under construction since the school has no headmaster to oversee construction of a classroom blocks.
“By right we start by teachers’ accommodation, toilets, water, classroom blocks, we are also working on drilling a borehole. We focus on teachers’ accommodation so that they have a place to stay, obviously if they don’t have accommodation they will go away since there is no headmaster in charge, so available teachers are the ones supervising the construction of the block, if builders construct a block without supervision of a teacher they will build substandard things.”