SHORTAGE OF STAFF ACCOMDATION FORCES TEACHERS TO OCCUPY CLASSROOMS AT POKEA PRIMARY SCHOOL
todaySeptember 15, 2023
By Kaleb Yiiki
Teachers in Pokea primary school in Arua City are calling upon the City Authorities to construct teacher’s houses for them. Pokea Primary School is a government aided school with over 1,000 pupil enrolment located in Pokea Ward Ayivu Division Arua City.
The school has 22 teachers with only six staff houses of which, two other Teachers are housed in Classrooms whereas the others commute for long distances to the school from their homes and others are renting in the nearby suburbs.
Radio Pacis visited Pokea Primary School and found out the deplorable state of affairs for Teachers Accommodation in the School. It was observed, although the School has some source of Water for the Children and the Teachers, Most of the Teachers Houses were lacking decent bathing Shelters and most of them had either dilapidated Kitchens and other never had none. Two classrooms are being occupied by two Teachers.
Grace Bako, a newly transferred teacher in Pokea Primary School who is accommodated in one of the dilapidated Class rooms says, after her transfer to Pokea Primary school, she has been renting outside in the community nearby the school but she faced several challenges where she had no peace from the land lord. She reveals that, because many of the occupants from the place in which she was renting are drunkards, they would disturb her demanding her to get out of the house in the middle of the night or else they would set the rented House a blaze.
These and many other threats she received from these drunkards caused her to leave the rented house and decided to come and occupy the Classroom. “I have demarcated the classroom using curtains. But I have Children and you know children can come from outside and open the curtains and as a result, I have no privacy.” she lamented.
Grace Bako a teacher shows the classroom she occupies
Efforts to get comments from the Head Teacher of the school yielded no fruits since the known Numbers of the head Teachers could not go through.
But The Director of Studies Ismail Amura expressed fear that the shortage of the teacher accommodation facilities within the school premises may result in the reduction of the pupils’ performance.
He detailed to radio Pacis that with the support of Parents and School Management Committee, they have tried to construct one semi-permanent house to host two teachers but due to inadequate funds, the construction works is stuck at the beam level. “All the remaining 15 teachers are now waiting to be hosed in that one house and I don’t know who will succeed to be housed in it after its completion,” he revealed.
The DOS Ismail Amura explaining the staff accommodation challenges
Radio Pacis asked the Secretary for Social Services in Arua City, Khalsum Abdu Fadimula on the way forwards for the teachers houses, she admits that many schools in Arua City lack teacher accommodation. She however says as city Council the priority is being given to classroom construction and renovation so that at least learners are taught in a shaded room away from sunshine and rain and other destruction that affect their concentration in learning.
She however reveals that the city status has widened the resource gap. She thus called upon the Parents and School Management Committees to plan to build teacher houses in their respective schools in the City using PTA funds in the meantime as the city council carries on the classroom renovation and construction plans.
But I thank the teachers for their courage to bear with us for none of them has come to me to say that since there is no accommodation for me I am quitting teaching.” She applauded teachers.
COVER PHOTO: Girl preparing Lunch at the Classrooms occupied by the teachers By Kaleb Yiiki