The Kigali City Council inspection team which recently visited various schools, left most head teachers speechless.
The schools were categorized according to the levels of hygiene and the KCC’s Vice-Mayor in charge of Social Affairs, Jeanne Gakuba, issued stern warnings to schools with poor hygiene. Unhygienic schools risk closure if they do not clean up.
This is embarrassing and despite authorities taking action, a lot is still questionable to the public.
Just in case one of the schools is closed, is it the head teacher to lose or the innocent child who was sent by an innocent parent? In other words, who will be affected by the closure?
If the head teachers are not dong their work well, the best solution would be to replace them with capable ones who can perform, considering that the most affected are government schools.
Before a school is ranked the worst - “red”, it ought to have undergone several warnings without showing signs of improvement, the inspectorate then has the right to punish them accordingly if there is no progress recorded.
But is out of the blue the punishment is closure, then it raises the question as to where has the inspectorate been while the school was going down the drain.
It is not in a split of a second that a school becomes unhygienic, it’s a gradual process.
What is the work of the inspectorate in schools? If they do not do their work, there are consequences. While the cats are always away, the mice find much time to play.
I don’t exactly understand whether people have to sit on the sidelines and then critisise while others play ball. One has to be an active player in the game such that you don’t blame others.
Most of the schools were fined and others are on the verge of being closed down. What is more agonizing is that it is proven that despite warnings, some schools do not change and are not punished.
ESSA Nyarugunga is considered one of the worst schools in terms of sanitation. But you find that even when the worst has come to the worst, it won’t be closed. What is done is the habitual warning and nothing else.
The inspection team must carry out regular inspection rather than wait for things to run out of hand and remember to react.
The author is a teacher at Kagarama secondary school