More than 100 pupils of Ngangati primary school in Athi ward, Kitui South, are subjected to strong winds, heavy rains, dust and scorching sunshine as they learn under trees due to lack of adequate classrooms and deplorable condition of the available infrastructure.
Expressing their displeasure on the terrible condition of the government-owned learning institution, the parents said the school had suffered serious neglect as it only has three classrooms which neither have doors, windows nor concrete floor.
Mercy Bernard, one of the parents lamented that the school the school lacks basic infrastructure including latrines and enough desks to guarantee their children a conducive and decent learning environment.
“It pains us to see our children attend classes under trees besides risking their lives visiting crumbling pit latrines. This is a poverty-stricken area and as parents we are unable to put up proper structures,” she rued.
Echoing her sentiments, another parent Julius Ndiku added that their children always suffer eye infections and chest problems due to heavy dust occasioned by strong winds commonest in the remote part of Kitui County.
He also decried a serious shortage of teachers facing the school saying that the situation has forced parents to employ four teachers to complement the four deployed by the Teachers Service Commission (TSC).
“Every parent parts with over Sh.3,000 per term to pay the PTA teachers but that has proved to be an uphill task for us due to high poverty levels we live in. We pray TSC to send us more teachers,” he said.
The parents appealed to the government and well-wishers to support the needy school in terms of acquiring adequate infrastructure for the learners to enable them to fairly compete with their counterparts from well-endowed schools.
Meanwhile, the destitute pupils who walk to school barefoot had a reason to smile after receiving free school shoes from Viatu Shuleni Organisation which seeks to mitigate lack of shoes among needy pupils.
“Shoes are a basic need for every child but most of these pupils who come from poor families have never worn shoes,” said the founder John Mulei.
“Sadly, they are forced to walk barefoot to and from school under the scorching sun besides risking infections related to poor hygiene whenever they visit latrines,” he added.