Teacher Shortage: Dozens of Pupils Go Without Lessons

2561 Views Bukomansimbi District, Uganda

In short
In schools under Universal primary Education -UPE found in Bigasa, Kibinge, Kitanda and Butenga sub counties, several pupils miss lessons while the available teachers are overworked. Some of the affected schools are Kyabagoma primary school, Buyinjayinja primary school, St. Anthony Mbirizi, St. Elizabeth Ganda,Kisojo primary school, Kayunga Muslim Primary school among others.

Dozens of pupils in primary schools in Bukomansimbi district are going without lessons due to lack of teachers. The affected schools include Kyabagoma primary school, Buyinjayinja primary school, St. Anthony Mbirizi, St. Elizabeth Ganda, Kisojo primary school and Kayunga Muslim Primary school among others. Local leaders in Kibinge, Bigasa and Kitanda sub counties, where the affected schools are located say about 40 teachers resigned from work citing the failure by government to pay them. 

Kisojo, Kyabagoma and Kayunga Muslim primary schools have only three teachers each, while Kasota primary school has only the head teacher.  Our reporter who visited the affected schools on Monday found pupils playing because there were no teachers to attend.The pupils told URN that they spend the biggest part of their day playing. Mariam Nalubega and Gloria Naminyinya are primary five pupils of Kyabagoma primary school in Kibinge Sub County. They told URN on Monday that they have repeatedly gone without Social studies lessons because there is no teacher to attend to them.

They claim that since their teacher Kassim Kisekka was struck dead by lightning, they have not got any replacement. Issa Butamanya, the Head Teacher Kyabagoma primary school says that he needs about nine teachers to fill the vacant posts in the school. Butamanya says that he remained with only three teachers after two others resigned last month over salaries. The two teachers are Sharon Nakamatte and Aidah Nakanjako. He says the resignation of the two teachers left a big gap in the school leaving some pupils to go without lessons.

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Trinity Musoke, a teacher of English at Kyabagoma primary school says he can longer rest because he is one of the only three teachers left at the school.

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Susan Namaganda, the Bukomansimbi district Woman MP who studied at Kisojo primary school is surprised by the shortage of teachers. She claims that during her years at the school they had 15 teachers.

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 Joseph Kakooza, the Bigasa sub county LC3 Chairperson says pupils in about eight schools spend time playing because of lack ot teachers. He says their sub county inspection team found several pupils playing instead of attending lessons. Kakooza says they have already notified Bukomansimbi district education department about the problem.

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Patrick Zziwa, the Bukomansimbi Education officer and Elizabeth Mbatudde, the Schools Inspector admit the crisis of teaching staff. They however say their hands are tied because they don’t have permission to recruit. Elizabeth Mbatudde says that they have already for permission to recruit at least sixty teachers to fill the vacant positions. She also says the salary of the missing teachers will be paid before the end of this week.



About the author

Edward Bindhe
Bindhe prides himself on being a part of the society he writes about. He believes there is no way a journalist can understand his society unless it considers him a part of it. This is why he is dedicated to investigating the challenges of the "little person."

Bindhe says, "My work reflects the Uganda Radio Network unique approach to news." Not many Ugandan journalists would consider or even notice the re-emergence of Water Hyacinth on a lake. Bindhe does.

Truant children will attract Bindhe's attention until he gets to the bottom of their truancy: poverty and the need to work to earn bread for their families. These are the kinds of stories Bindhe is often after.

Edward Bindhe is the Masaka URN bureau chief. Rakai, Lwengo, Lyantonde, Kalangala, Mpigi, Kalungu, Bukomansimbi and Sembabule districts fall under his docket. He has been a URN staff member since 2009.

A Mass Communication graduate from Uganda Christian University, Bindhe started practising journalism in 2008 as a reporter for Radio Buddu in Masaka district.