A Bumula constituency school in pathetic condition

By Christopher Owuor
Monday, February 3rd, 2020
The only toilets at Wamunyiri Primary School, Bumula constituency, Bungoma, shared by both girls and boys as well as teachers. Photo/PD/YUSUF MASIBO
In summary

A school in Bumula constituency Bungoma south is in the verge of being shut down by the government for lack of toilets and adequate infrastructure.

Parents of Wamunyiri Primary School led by Geoffrey Wekesa the school’s PTA Chair, are appealing to well wishers to intervene and help the school, which risk closure by officials from the ministries of Education and Health. 

There is fear of an outbreak of cholera and other water-borne diseases due to the dilapidated toilets for pupils and teachers.

Started in early 1980s, the institution has 680 pupils but has only two toilet shared by both male and female students and all teachers.

The school has neither a gate nor a fence, posing an insecurity challenge to the school community. Initially, the institution had eight toilets but six have so far sunk. 

“If you dare use this toilet on bare feet, you risk contacting disease,” Wekesa told People Daily.

In class, most pupils have no desks and the few available are shared by five pupils each. 

“There no chairs for teachers and a times when we have a visitor, a teacher will have to stand up for him,” he added. 

Good performance 

The chairman said despite the challenges, the school was the most improved in Kabula ward in Bumula constituency in the 2019 KCPE exam. It had a mean score of 210 marks in 2018 and 240 in 2019.

He said the parents who thought the school had gone down and transferred their kids, have since returned them children to the school making the population to swell.

“We are now having a big number of pupils and we are calling upon well wishers to come out and assist us since the school has raised prominent people from the area and in the country,’ he added.

Stephen Walela, a resident said the school has old and dilapidated classes built in 1980. Last year, the school was almost closed because of the same reasons. 

“We have pupils from neighbouring constituencies of Kanduyi and Matungu who come here to study and we calling upon wells wishers to come and assist us,” he added.

Headteacher Vitalis Ochieng’ says efforts improve academic performance are being frustrated by lack of cooperation from the parents, mainly due to poverty.

“In 2017, we only had 360 pupils but today we have 680 from ECD to Class Eight because of improved performance,” he said. 

Last year, the school had over 10 students with more than 300 marks and above; 12 got between 250 and 300 marks and only about six pupils got below 200 marks, Ochieng said.