Regional News of Monday, 28 October 2013
Source: Mavis Boamah/ GIJ
Many students in rural areas cry over infrastructural problems as it has become a major bruise on the skin of students, teachers and the communities over the years.
The heart of the problem arose during a torrential rainfall which shook a Presby school at Odumkyere Darmang, a village in the Upper West Akim District to its foundation. The school, according to the headmaster, has been in that state for a very long time, adding that all attempts in the form of written proposals to GES and other stakeholders to find a solution have proven futile.
“The structure of the school building has contributed immensely to the abysmal performance of students especially in the final exam (B.E.C.E)”, a student lamented.
Explaining further, he said “the roofing was rusted and full of leakages causing blisters on their skin whenever the sun shines.”
“We are always beaten by the rain when it does not give us warning signs.”
However, “when fortunate to be given a prior notice, school closes for the day,” a form three student noted.
The headmaster of the school, Mr. Frank Addy Young, expressed his worry when he stated that the school building is on the verge of collapse and sometimes feared for the students, especially when the mist eddied round the school building.
Odumkyere Darmang is seen as the “capital” to all the other surrounding villages. As a result of this, parents in these surrounding villages enroll their children in O’Darmang which has both the basic and the Junior High School.
Students in the surrounding villages as a result of the above mentioned problem seize the opportunity to evade classes whenever it threatened to rain in the morning.
“This problem is spreading rapidly in most rural areas, and has resulted to the poor academic performance of students in these areas,” a teacher noted.
“A stop watch can be correct twice in twenty four hours,” this was a statement made by the school prefect, Evans Opare, when explaining that though they were in a village they had multiple skills and talents hidden in them and only conducive and enabling environment with all the necessary facilities would help expose them.
Evans sits in his classroom. The inquisitive sun that had pierced through the pot-holed roofing throws a ray of light on his forehead. The chalkboard is virtually reflecting like the mirror with the rays of the sun, squinting to write from the board.
Evans calls himself and his colleagues the “renaissance boys and girls” saying they can do same or better as their friends in the cities who are excelling.
The school, according to the headmaster, lacks many other facilities that enhance effective teaching and conducive learning atmosphere. The pupils, therefore, urge the government, stakeholders, NGOs and other corporate bodies to come to their assistance to salvage the situation.