Over 230 learners from Siguruguru Junior Primary School face an uncertain future after an application to establish a temporary school in Rundu’s Tumweneni informal settlement was put on hold by the directorate of education in the region. This follows a court order compelling all illegal occupants to move from the area, including the grounds where the school was erected.
The school’s principal Joy Mugungu established Siguruguru Junior Primary School in January 2019. Overcrowding, long walks to school and lack of space in schools within the Rundu circuit led Mugungu to establish the school to meet government halfway.
“Children in my community were sitting at home instead of going to school and as an individual who believes in education, I could not sit back and allow them to roam the streets,” she said.
Having met the required number of registered learners Mugungu applied to the directorate of education for the school to be approved and registered with the ministry of education. However, the application was put on hold after the directorate received an instruction from the town council that the school was illegally established on the land it occupies. At the time of the application, the school was already operational and had a population of more than 100 learners.
To date, there are 230 learners from pre-primary to grade four who are taught by eight volunteer teachers. In a letter seen by the Ministry of Information and Communication Technology, dated 13 November 2019, Rundu Town Council informed the education directorate that it was not advisable for them to plan or establish a temporary school in the area, because the occupation of land on which the school was built was illegal.
Fransisca Thikerete, acting CEO of the Rundu Town Council, said instructions in the letter were clear and such establishments were not supposed to be put up in that settlement.
Thikerete advised the directorate of education to liaise with them and identify suitable serviced land within the town where a school can be established.
Contacted for comment, the Kavango East education director Fanuel Kapapero said education inspectors would be sent to the school to assess the situation, and the necessary action would be taken. “After our assessment we will see whether we can place those learners in other schools until the land issue is resolved,” he said. Kapapero, however, cautioned members of the community against establishing schools without following the required procedures.
2020-02-21 10:34:44 | 1 months ago