Funding constrains has left schools in an awkward situation as to how they will be able to improve some of their facilities and infrastructure suitable for the current pandemic and State of Emergency.
Minister for Education Joseph Yopyyopy, recently announced that the government had released K50 million to all schools.
“The government had released K50 million for schools to install hand basin and other hygiene equipment for students. More funding will be released soon”, said Minister Yopyyopy.
However, some schools claim they are yet to receive their fair share of funding.
“The funding from the K50 million, that was for the covid-19 that was given to all schools, some of the elementary schools here, the funding was really small, some did not even receive anything, nothing. Some of the schools here are unable to go out and purchase the PPE’s and other covid-19 consumables, said Joseph Paul, Head Teacher of Butuka Academic Pre-School.
Moses Modukewau, Head teacher of Waigani Primary school added, “The money that was promised to be put into the accounts many schools did not receive that.”
In the meantime, NCDC health inspectors are visiting schools to make sure they comply with certain conditions before classes resume.
“Is it possible for NCDC to visit our schools regularly so you can come to know the reality, as everyone has expressed, honestly I tell you if you take it seriously to visit our schools Monday to Friday for the next few weeks, you will close most of the schools”, said Br. Anthony Pancras, Principal of De La Salle Secondary School.
The Education Department Assistant Secretary, Sam Lora, also called on parents to play their part during this pandemic.
“Please parents will also participate in these activities, so when you are addressing these issues with your parents, ensure that they have a part to play, as little as equipping the child with a bar of soap or a face masks”, said Lora.
Stakeholders are anxious to see how schools will manage this situation when classes resume on Monday.