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Police quell grade one placement unrest

2023-06-06  Eveline de Klerk

Police quell grade one placement unrest

WALVIS BAY – Some Walvis Bay residents have questioned the fact that parents could secure placements for grade on at Kuisebmond Primary School, even though official enrolment officially started only yesterday in the Erongo region.

The placement of first graders has become an annual challenge, where parents and teachers have been lobbying for more than a decade for new schools to accommodate the learners, especially in Walvis Bay and Swakopmund. 

Hence, camping at the school days before enrolment has been the norm in Walvis Bay.

However, some parents who rushed to the school as early as 03h00 yesterday queued up in front of the school and were surprised to find that most of the places for grade one were already taken over the weekend by those who were camping in front of the school.

The discontent resulted in the police being called in to control the desperate parents in front of the school, as their names had to be put on the waiting list.

“How is this fair? We were told during the parents meeting last week that enrolment will start on Monday, yet people were already given numbers over the weekend,” one of the parents, Martha Dausas said.

According to her, the actions of the school did not provide equal opportunity to all parents.

Another parent, Loide Shilongo, also shared the same sentiments, saying the school should not have given numbers to the parents who overnighted at the school, as the enrolment officially started on Monday. Addressing the parents on the issue, the school’s principal, Given Simataa, said the decision to give numbers to the parents who camped at the school during the weekend was made through the education director’s office, and he was just following instructions. “If you need answers, ask the director or the inspector, as I was instructed by the director that the parents should be given numbers, as they would still be first in line for enrolment. That is why all questions should be directed to the ministry and not to me,” Simataa said.

He then indicated the parents who turned up yesterday will be added to a list that will be forwarded to the inspector’s office. “The inspectors will find a solution for you,” Simataa told the parents.

He also told New Era they have only 170 spaces for grade one, and some of the spaces are already taken up by the pre-primary learners currently enrolled at the school. -

2023-06-06  Eveline de Klerk

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