The Diko Islamic School at Ahwerease-Darman in the Nsawam-Adoagyiri Municipality (ASMA) of the Eastern Region is in dire need of support to improve school infrastructure to enhance effective teaching and learning.
The school, said to be recognised under the Islamic Education Project, Ghana (IEP), a non-governmental organisation, for the past decades has been facing numerous challenges that has hindered academic performance and the students’ learning ability.
The school, which has a population of 295 lacks facilities such as toilet, potable water supply, information communication technology (ICT) centre, library and a canteen, while the school blocks’ roofing are in a deplorable state.
The headmaster of the school, Mr Saalu Sita Diko, in an interview with the Ghanaian Times described the situation as “horrible” because it hindered teaching and learning.
He said due to the lack of potable water supply to the school, the students were compelled to walk several kilometres every morning to fetch water from other communities to the school, for domestic use.
Mr Diko explained that under this circumstance, the teachers out of fear and panic, following the numerous rape and kidnapping cases happening in the country, had to accompany the female students to fetch water to prevent them from being attacked by miscreants.
“Every morning, our students roam the town in search of water from streams, rivers and wells to fetch for the school. They often return late; when the lesson period is almost over and sometimes teachers have to wait for absent students to return with their buckets of water before classes commence,” he added.
Mr Diko said that the school had only two poor and unhygienic toilets facilities, one being used by teachers and the other by the students.
“This has made my students to engage in frequent open defecation in the bushes and around the school premises, which we fear might cause an outbreak of cholera among the students, especially those in the nursery,” he said.
Mr Saed Diko, the ICT teacher of the school said the room which serves as an ICT laboratory only boasts of two functioning desktop computers for the entire school.
“We have only two computers working and each time students visit the ICT lab, I am unable to teach them simultaneously. They always have to take turns to be able to get a feel of what is being taught that day and if my lesson time is up, the class would have to be rescheduled to a week later,” he said.
He described this situation as very disturbing and affecting teaching and learning, especially the JHS three students.
Mr Shadrack Odame Agyare, the Religious and Moral Education (RME) and Basic Design Technology (BDT) teacher of the school, expressed his concern over the leakage of some of the classrooms, resulting in perennial flooding of the school during the rainy season.
Mr Agyare said the roofs of some classrooms were partly ripped-off, making teaching and learning impossible each time there was a downpour.
He added that the entire school could only boast of a shed made from palm fronds to serve as a makeshift school canteen.
Mr Mohammed Ayuba, the Secretary of the Parent Teacher Association (PTA), said the parents in the community were unable to contribute to purchase text books for their children.
He added that teachers were compelled to procure teaching and learning materials from their own resources for the students.
FROM EVANGEL KELVIN AINOO, AHWEREASE-DARMAN