Galilea M A 1&2 JHS not yet visited
Date published: November 8, 2012
By Bernice Bessey
Among the promises is education. While one party preaches free basic and secondary education, the incumbent party also boasts of replacing schools under trees with decent and befitting buildings in every region across the country.
Evidence of these buildings has been challenged by many who continue to see schools in their areas still in deplorable conditions. One of such schools is the Galilea Municipal Assembly 1&2 Junior High School, which is almost 20 years old.
The school was an old farmers brigade building built by Ghana’s first President, Dr. Kwame Nkrumah, for agricultural purposes.
The school started from a church building, before being taken over by the government. It has a population of about 370 pupils, and 16 teachers running the shift system due to lack of space.
Since the classrooms were a hall that had been partitioned, the teachers were compelled use the shade of a tree as a staff common room.
The saddest aspect of the school is that one side of one of the buildings collapsed five years ago, with the rest of the walls eroding and cracking.
It would, however, not be a surprise if one day the residents, students and teachers find the rest of building collapsed, because of its weak nature.
To compound issues, a public toilet has been built right beside the school, blocking ventilation. When the Accra File visited the place, the teachers and pupils were busily fanning themselves during lessons hours because of the undue heat in the classroom.
Individuals have also encroached on lands meant for expansion, while the assembly officials watch unconcerned.
A teacher told the Accra File that the population of the school keeps increasing, but expansion is still in the pipeline of the assembly and the education authorities.
He said the only evidence that the government is trying to help the situation, is an old foundation that a contractor has abandoned for more than a year now.
The teacher said the assembly promised to complete the new block, which comprises of the Lower and Upper Primary, in August this year, but it never came to pass.
“We were surprised to see building at the same level as we left for holidays. We don’t have primary attached to the school, so the children have to cross the busy road to school all the time.
“Three of our final year students were killed by vehicles during the Basic Education Certificate Examination (BECE), and the iron rods are all rusting,” he bemoaned.
When the File contacted the assembly, the officials who pleaded anonymity, said the building was a Ghana Education Trust Fund (GETFund) project, and that the assembly does not have control over it.
The officer said the only role the assembly plays is the tendering process, selection of contractors, and approval of sites for the projects.
Even though the school was promised to access the toilet facility free of charge, the caretakers were charging fees before use.
This has, however, led to confrontations between teachers, students and the caretakers.
“We were promised by the assembly member of the area to use the facility without paying any fees. But each time the children or any of the teachers visit, the caretakers demand money from us,” a teacher said.
The assembly, when contacted, claimed not having any knowledge about the existence of the toilet which is a surprise to the File.
Pix by Eric Wiredu
Short URL: http://thechronicle.com.gh/?p=49098