Vakpo Sec Tech sends SOS
The discussions about poor educational infrastructure are usually centred on schools under trees. However, for teachers and students of the Vakpo Senior High Technical School (VASTECH) in the Volta Region, their situation goes beyond school under trees.
Apart from a new six-unit classroom block and a boys’ dormitory under construction, the school has never undergone any major renovations since its establishment.
The school, which celebrates its 25th anniversary this year, lacks adequate classrooms for students and bungalows for staff.
Lack of infrastructure
Due to the unavailability of classroom blocks, teaching and learning is done on the corridors of existing classroom blocks that have been converted to dormitories, and sometimes under trees.
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Some students have no option but to stand throughout the entire period as the tables and chairs are not enough.
The dining hall of the school currently serves a dual purpose of a classroom as well. Classes that are held in the dining hall are interrupted during dining period and resume after stu nts are done taking their meals.
At the visual arts department of the school, students have to take their practical lessons mostly on the floor as a makeshift department put up by the head of department and other teachers, is unable to accommodate all of them.
The Mirror, in its August 31, 2018 edition, reported how technology was yet to catch up with school as the kitchen staff continue to cook with firewood under a makeshift shed to feed students, thus making students wait for long hours to have their meals.
Cooking takes a lot of time and subsequently disrupts the academic schedule.
A recent visit to the school revealed how kitchen staff still struggled on a daily basis to prepare meals for students amid smoke from the firewood used in cooking.
The kitchen is understaffed, as only four personnel, including the matron usually prepare meals for the over 800 students.
The school does not only grapple with issues of space and lack of infrastructure to accommodate the increasing number of students each year, it also have issues with sanitation and hygiene, as well as bleating goats and other animals that freely roam the school compound, interrupting teaching and learning.
The absence of a fence wall also makes it easy for miscreants to enter the school compound and do what they please, while some students also take advantage of the situation to go out of school, making it difficult for teachers to monitor their activities and movements.
The Board Chairperson of the school, Mrs Patricia Akpene Tegbe-Agbo, appealed to the government to provide the needed infrastructure for the school, as well as old students and stakeholders to come to their aid to enhance teaching and learning.
She said till then, teaching and learning would continue on the corridors of existing classroom blocks and under trees, while the sound of bleating goats and other stray animals share the compound of the school.