Parents, children & head teachers are called upon to support and promote education especially in this period when children will be doing UNEB exams. ‘’ Some parents are not bothered of their children’s education and do not care whether the child is set for UNEB exams or not yet as parents we are supposed to support the school administration to see that nothing interferes with the child in the period when he/she is being assessed. Head teachers who are denying children to seat their final exams are doing a wrong thing, they should let children seat for their exams and may be deny them their results if they owe the school some dues’’, said Mr. Manyindo Frank the head teacher Nyakasura school in Fort portal Kabarole district.
|Children in a classroom in one of the schools in Kyenjojo district|
Mr. Manyindo said this while appearing on ToroDev supported weekly program, ‘Orukurato’ that is aired live every Saturday 8:00pm-10:00pm on Hits Fm a local radio station in Fort Portal. The live radio discussion on 15th October, 2016 had the participation of Mr. Mugisha Willy the director of Rwimi Parents in Fort Portal & Mr. Mwesige Richard the head teacher of Mpumbu primary school.
The head teachers were sharing attributes as to why some private schools perform better than government aided schools (public) citing issues like motivation, environment, attitudes of teachers, children & parents, structures in form of enough class rooms, reading materials, lighting systems, etc. They called upon parents to play their roles if they are to improve their children’s education by not only living the task of learning to the teachers who may not play all the required roles.
The head teachers also shared views on the education policies in the country whether they favor the education system or retard looking at both primary and secondary levels. They said despite having a short term this year as a result of general elections in the country, as managers in schools they have tried to run the school programs as required and now they are ready for the final exams having gone through mocks which test the student’s ability to perform better in the final exams. ‘’We still have parents with negative attitude to education, they do not want to support their children by providing packed lunch, scholastic materials and to the worst they absent them to work in gardens which factors have become challenges towards attaining the education we want for our children’’, said Mr. Mwesige Richard the head teacher Mpumbu primary school.
Children at school during break time
‘’The money allocated in government schools is very little to run the school for a full term in addition to releasing it late. Government mobilized parents to take their children to school with a thinking that education is ‘free’ and this led to increased enrolments hence increased costs to run the school and also insufficient classrooms, desks, latrines, which have again led to dropouts. Parents financial help is required for it will help to improve the structures and other administrative costs incurred during the course of the school term’’, said Mr. Mugisha Willy the director Rwimi parents school.
During the 2 hours live discussion, listeners were given time to call in & send sms; ‘’Universal primary schools are faced with challenges of lack of enough classrooms, desks, latrines & lack of parents support, how shall we end such shortcomings?’’, asked Baguma Joseph a caller from Kisomoro in Kabarole district, ‘’inspectors & head teachers should improve the supervision of schools & teachers who are not serious when they are given a task to perform especially those in government schools and if they fail to abide, their pay should be reduced or not pay them totally’’, said David Mugenyi a caller from Kyenjojo district, ”why are school management committees (SMC) & parents teachers association (PTA) formed in schools and yet they do not do anything to improve the education standards in schools, they should be inducted on their roles and responsibilities in these schools to improve performance’’, said Bagonza Godfrey a caller from Kyegegwa district.
We are grateful to SIDA, NED, SPIDER, ICT4DEM, CIPESA, HITS FM and all other development partners for the financial & technical support to keep the programs running.