Authorities of the Walewale Senior High Technical School (WALSECTECH) have appealed to the government and benevolent organisations to as a matter of urgency,provide the school with adequate infrastructural facilities, especially classroom blocks and toilet facilities.
They said that was a necessary step to help address challenges in the school which were hampering effective teaching and learning.
Established 37 years ago, the school, the premier second cycle institution in the West Mamprusi Municipality in the North East Region, has seen very little improvement, especially in the area of infrastructure, making it difficult to meet the growing demand of students.
A visit by the Daily Graphic to the school recently revealed that the school lacks adequate accommodation for students and teachers, as well as limited classroom space and these have led to overcrowding.
With a student population of 2,276, the students are crowded in the inadequate dormitories, with their chop boxes packed on the verandas, while some students take their lessons in an abandoned uncompleted dormitory block, work on which was started during the erstwhile administration of former President John Agyekum Kufuor.
The school’s dining hall is in a deplorable condition, with inadequate tables and chairs to cater for the large number of students, compelling majority of them to eat their meals in the dormitories or on pavements on the school’s premises.
With all the boreholes in the school broken down, the students have no option but to trek to town in search of water.
Toilet facilities in the school are in deplorable state, with dangerous and deep cracks on the walls. This has forced both teachers and students to resort to open defecation in nearby bushes.
The Assistant Headmaster of the school in charge of Administration, Mr Amadu M. Timbilla, in an interview with the Daily Graphic, said: "It is a serious issue. Even the female students also practise open defecation because of the bad state of the few toilet facilities, exposing all of us to dangerous health hazards”.
He said the school needed additional 36 classrooms to be able to accommodate the growing student population, explaining that “the school is currently facing infrastructure deficit and if by next year the double track system ends we will have to get enough classrooms to be able to accommodate all the students”.
He said in spite of those challenges, authorities had managed to mobilise funds to construct a wall to protect the school’s land from encroachers and prevent students from going to town without permission, but “some people continue to pull down portions of the wall, which is very worrying.”
He also said the school authorities, in collaboration with the Forestry Commission, was embarking on a tree planting exercise to protect the school’s environment.