About 1,715 learners from six public schools in Kisumu County risk missing school as from January next year following the submerging of their institutions.
Four primary schools and two secondary schools in Nyando and Nyakach sub counties are submerged in water to knee level due to backflow of waters from Lake Victoria since mid this year following heavy downpour in the area.
According to the Kisumu County Director of Education Isaac Atebe, the schools need 65 tents and portable toilets before January 4 when all children are expected to report back to schools after 10 months of closure due to Covid-19 pandemic.
He said at the moment, all 10 tents have been procured courtesy of a donation from UNICEF.
Mr Atebe, who spoke during Kisumu County Development Implementation Coordination Committee meeting chaired by County Commissioner Josephine Ouko said the schools affected are Kandaria Mixed and Ombaka mixed secondary schools, Kandaria, Nyamrundu,Ogenya, and Oseth primary schools.
“This necessitated the relocation of the affected schools to nearby existing schools where currently grade 4, class 8 and KCSE candidates are undertaking their studies,” said Atebe.
The County Director has however noted that it would not be possible to have all the pupils and students in those structures when all classes resume on January 4 next year.
“Due to the reopening of schools on 4th January 2021, there is urgent need for learners and teachers to be supplied with tents and portable toilets as a temporary measure for use at the sites,” he added.
In the new setup, 193 students of Kandaria secondary school are to move to the existing Nduru secondary school with student population of 105, requires 4 tents and 7 portable toilets.
Kandaria Primary school, with enrolment of 649 pupils moves to the existing Ugwe primary school with 386 pupils and requires 13 tents and 27 portable toilets, among others.
According to the assessment carried out by area education officials, the affected schools are submerged to knee level, boreholes are contaminated, classroom walls have cracks and schools’ property including digital learning devices and text books have been destroyed.
County Commissioner Josephine Ouko said government was working with partners in education sector to ensure normal learning resumes in January where the affected students have been relocated to.
She also asked the Lake Victoria South Water Works Development Agency to work closely with the local ministry of education officials to ensure all schools within Kisumu town and environs are connected to water system.
By George Kaiga