By Ambrose Kweronda
As Ugandan schools finish one week of fresh reopening after almost two years of closure, the enrolment of pupils in schools around Kisoro remains wanting.
A survey done by mknewslink.com reporter this Friday indicates that most pupils have not yet reported to their former schools, now for a week.
Low enrollment of pupils was mostly reported in Bufumbira North and Bukimbiri Constituencies, with some girls also reportedly pregnant and some said to have delivered.
At Rubuguri Primary School, the head teacher Busingye Gaudensia said that at least 5 girls got married, 1 delivered while most boys over 15 years left the school.
At Rubona Primary School in Nyarubuye Sub County, the headteacher Turikumukiza Fred says they have been able to get only 128 pupils in school.
At Iryaruvumba High School, 10 girls and 1 boy got married. The school did not have a single student in S5. The classrooms and power connections at Iryaruvumba Primary school are said to have been vandalized by unknown people. The school however is said to have seen a rise in the number of pupils.
All the classrooms at Bizenga PS had no windows. Schools are still waiting for renovation funds as promised by government
At Bizenga primary school in Nyundo Sub County, all the classrooms were found to be in a sorry state, with windows and chalkboards vandalized. The school had 1 pupil in P6, and 6 in P7, according to the head teacher, Nyirabeza Jeninah.
At Kabindi SS, there were 498 students, but they had over 700 students before the lockdown. Kabindi PS had 704 pupils, but had around 760 before the lockdown.
In all the schools sampled by our reporters, the number of girls is higher than the boys. For instance, at Sooko PS, there were only 3 boys in P7 compared to 13 girls.
It was also observed that schools have averagely tried to observe the Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs). The most visited schools had hand washing facilities in place, but it remains to be seen whether everyone was using them as required.
The less adhered to directive is of face masks and social distancing as many students could be seen crowded and with no facemasks. Kindergarten classes in most private schools in Kisoro municipality were very crowded, especially the baby classes.
By the time our reporter visited Kavumaga PS in Rubuguri Town Council, the headteacher Mr Hakiza Elijah was not available for a comment. The Director of Studies, Atuhaire Vian regretted the delayed funding of schools with the UPE Capitation Grant. By noon, the school had only 145 pupils, out of the 320 that studied before the lockdown. School authorities said that they have information that at least 3 girls got married.
The headteachers continue to express dissatisfaction over the delayed UPE capitation grants which is used to buy office equipment, and classroom chalk. The schools last week received Shs 1.5 million which was used to purchase equipment for enforcing Covid-19 SOPs. The schools are also waiting for the release of renovation funds, whose amount has not yet been established by our team.
www.mknewslink.com a greater western Uganda news website