Wankole Primary School
School Motto: Struggle for Success
This school is typical of many schools in Uganda that are struggling to achieve with facilities that make their mission nearly impossible. Their challenges are enormous plus, under the past headmaster, there was a serious amount of in-fighting. Thankfully, in June 2013, Mrs Florence Birungi was transferred to the school and since then we can confirm that all sides are now working together. Indeed the community have supplied a good number of new bricks in anticipation of assistance from HvSMF. This is very encouraging.
Florence wrote, in her report to me: “I was handed over this school on 20th June 2013 but I had feared to come because of the wrangles which existed among the 3 categories of people – the head teacher and staff, the parents and the community. I later prayed to the Almighty God to empower me with the capacity to calm down that hot and dusty situation, so as to concentrate on what could benefit our children and indeed God listened to my prayers and granted peace upon everybody. As I talk now we are in harmony.”
The school is situated on a 10 acre site in Kamuli District and it is one of the worst schools within the district with regard to infrastructure. It is close to other HvSMF schools and could feed some of its leavers into Bupadhengo Secondary School. In June 2015 there were 817 pupils, of which 389 are girls. There are 7 classrooms that are able to be used with an average of 118 pupils in each classroom. In 2013 the Kakira Rural Out Growers Development (KORD) financed the renovation of 2 classrooms – see right
There are two blocks of 2 permanent classrooms which need minor renovations. (see right) There are 4 totally inadequate classrooms, plus office and store (see below right). The walls are weak since they are constructed using cow dung and sand. The entire floor is dusty and needs screeding. The roof rafters are weak and the iron sheets have holes in them. The building then needs total renovation including plastering inside and out; windows and doors added, new roof, blackboards installed etc. The total cost to renovate the 4 government classrooms and, completely rebuild the further 4 classrooms and office, would be £11,250. The school would then have 10 good classrooms and the average class size would come down to 81 pupils per class.
There are 10 latrines in total. Five latrines which are shared by the teachers and girls, we would like to give these to the boys. In 2013, the District Education Officer and Kamuli District Local Government, constructed 4 x new girls’ latrines with a disabled cubicle this was because the original girls’ latrines needed to be demolished (see below right). To renovate these five latrines would cost £1,000. The 428 boys would then have 10 latrines. To construct 8 new girls’ latrines, a new boys’ washroom and a new girls’ washroom would cost £4,750. The children need the washrooms as many of them have no shoes and thus when using the latrines this can be very unhygienic.
There is no proper accommodation for the teachers at the school. Some teachers travel long distances to school, which is precious time wasted every morning and evening when they could be preparing and marking lessons. Also, if it rains, they stay at home. Others rent in the nearby trading centre, spending money they don’t have. To construct 5 new teachers’ houses, 4 teachers’ latrines and 2 teachers’ washrooms, all of which are necessary in order to recruit and retain the good staff, would cost £11,000
There are 75 x 3-seater desks for 225 children. This means that 592 children have no desk and take their lessons sitting on the dirty dusty floor where the jiggers parasite is prevalent. This enters their bodies under their toe nails and deforms their feet. To provide 100 x 3-seater desks @ £20 per desk would cost £2,000. There is little staff furniture, no cupboards, no shelves - £1,000 would provide sufficient for them. They have no text books or reference books for the teachers. £2,000 would transform the school’s learning abilities. The children’s talents are not being expanded due to a lack of musical instruments or sports equipment. These two packages would cost £800 and the school can then compete in interschool competitions.
There is no water at the school and no water tanks to collect the copious rain water from the roofs. The children have to cross the road to the nearest bore hole which is 2kms away and risk being hit by cars or motorbikes. Thus access to clean and safe water is a challenge. A 20,000 litre ISSB water tank costs £1,250 and we would like to donate 2 of these @ £2,500.
The present kitchen needs renovation, plus a lockable store needs to be added in order to be able to safe keep any wood for the fire that has been foraged, as otherwise it risks being stolen. If no store is provided, the school will use a classroom, as a wood store.
The head teacher, Florence, is hard working and enthusiastic. She is excellent at keeping in touch and is very keen for our support. Wankole’s primary leaving exam results are exceptional, considering their resources. Florence needs to be praised and encouraged. In November 2014 they achieved 2 x div 1 passes, 30 x div 2 passes and 5 x div 3 passes, thus all of these children can go on to free secondary education. Only three achieved a pass in div 4 which means they can go on but their parents have to pay. These results are better that most schools in the area.
We would like to donate as many of the above challenges as possible as then this school would have a chance to improve even further their academic successes. We would then monitor the school and see whether, as a direct result of HvSMF’s assistance, their enrolment increases and their academic results improve, before providing any further donations. Please help us to assist this very poor rural school.
Head Teacher: Mrs Florence Birungi
Number of Pupils in June 2015: 817