Schools in La Nkwatanang can’t pay cost of desludging septic tanks
Basic Schools in the La Nkwantanang Madina Municipality of the Greater Accra Region say they are paying between GH¢800.00 and GH¢ 1500.00 every month for septic emptier services, which according to them is a drain on their coffers.
These came to light at a stakeholder’s engagement organised by the assembly to solicit information on teething challenges confronting education in the municipality.
The meeting followed concerns raised by some head teachers that they could no longer bear the cost of desludging their schools’ waste under the Greater Accra Metropolitan Assembly (GAMA) Sanitation and Water Projects in their schools.
It was on the theme: “The Roles and Responsibilities of Head Teachers and School Improvement Support Officers (SISOs) in improving education in municipality.”
Issues discussed included sanitation, schools’ performance at the Basic Entrance Certificate Examination (BECE), punctuality of teachers and roles of parents in the education of their words.
The GAMA project is a World Bank programme aimed at increasing access to sanitation towards ending open defecation in schools.
The project has so far constructed and handed over 406 toilet units and also trained teachers and their pupils on its usage, and per the guidelines the facilities were to be managed and maintained by the Parent Teacher Associations (PTAs) SMCs as agreed when they were handed over to the schools.
But the head teachers stated that while some parents were supporting the maintenances of the facilities in some school, others had refused, claiming it was the responsibility of the government.
But the Municipal Chief Executive MCE, Mrs Jennifer Dede Adjabeng, after listening to the plight of the head teachers assured of meeting the PTAs and the SMCs to address the impasse, and also promised to support the schools with the dislodging vehicle until an agreement was reached.
On issues of low performance, the MCE lamented that parents preferred sending their children to private schools which was very expensive and urged the education directorate to adopt measures to reverse the trend.
She promised to address the infrastructure challenges confronting some schools, especially those running shift by providing infrastructure, construct ICT laboratories and also put in place measures to construct an office complex for the education directorate.
There were also solidarity messages from the Ghana National Association of Teachers (GNAT), the Ghana Education Service (GES), The National Best Teachers and the Heads of West African Senior High Schools (WASS) and the Presbyterian Boys Senior High School (PRESEC).
BY LAWRENCE VOMAFA-AKPALU