Teachers of Ofori Panin Junior High School (JHS) in the East Akim Municipality have threatened to boycott classes from the beginning of the next academic year, if their classroom block, which had its roof ripped off some two years ago, was not repaired.
Like the teachers, students of the school have also indicated their readiness to stay at home when school reopens for the next academic calendar, if the government, particularly the Municipal Assembly, did not come to their aid.
They said ‘no classroom, no school,’ since their condition left much to be desired, and would rather stay at home than be in the school where they were overcrowded.
‘Even though it will not speak well of us, as young students, to stay away from class, it will be a best decision for us to stay at home until the classrooms are re-constructed,’ the angry students declared.
This came to light when the paper visited the school last Friday to ascertain the condition of the students, following news that broke out that the students and their teachers were seriously agitating over their classroom block.
The Headmaster of the school, Mr. Bitherman Adu, in an interview with the paper, said the condition of both teachers and students of the school was very frustrating, and that the best option was to stay at home.
According to him, the roof of the classroom block, which was formerly a poultry coop and subsequently converted to a school in 1982, was ripped off about two years ago when a strong storm hit the area.
He continued that the negative effect of the storm compelled management of the school to combine classes A&B resulting in about 140 pupils using one classroom.
This development, the Ofori Panin Headmaster said, had compromised the quality of teaching and learning over the past two years, with its corresponding health threat, because of overcrowding.
Mr. Adu reiterated that their efforts to reach the Eastern Regional Coordinating Council and East Akim Municipal Assembly to save the situation had not yielded any results.
He disclosed that the former Eastern Regional Minister, Victor Smith, and the Member of Parliament (MP) for the Abuakwa North Constituency, J.B. Danquah-Adu, promised constructing the school during the 2012 presidential and parliamentary campaigning.
The headmaster further stated that he was worried for the students, since they do not have any place to sit for the upcoming end of term examinations, which is starting on Monday April 8, 2013.