A class six pupil of Jou Primary School in the Nanumba North District of the Northern Region of Ghana, has appealed to government and non-governmental organizations working in the educational sector to come to the aid of continuing pupils of the community with a Junior High School (JHS).
According to 12 year old Ayisha Abukari, there was no a single JHS in the Jou community, thereby compelling pupils to trek long distances everyday to attend the nearest JHS located 27 kilometres away in Bimbilla township after completing primary six.
Ayisha who could not hide her dreadfulness of soon about to join several of her senior colleagues to trek daily to attend JHS outside Bimbilla, called on government and NGOs like ActionAid-Ghana to help the people of Jou with a JHS.
Speaking to Savannahnews in an interview during a visit to the Nanumba North District, she also appealed to ActionAid to assist school children with solar lamps to enhance their academic performance, because they relied on torchlight for their studies and that was seriously affecting their sights.
“I want Actionaid people to help build a school for us so that we won’t walk far distance to Bimbilla. We spend a lot of money and even become tired; we are in P6 we want to go to JHS the next academic year. ActionAid and Songtaba has helped us a lot that is why am begging them to give us JHS. They give books, teach me how to handle my menses and build primary school and toilet for us” she recalled.
Parents in communities like Bimbilla, Karaga, Juasheiyila and Salinayila all send their wards to the Jou Primary School for their elementary education. But they have to choose between renting accommodation for their wards in Bimbilla town where they can continue with their education after completing primary six or withdrawing them from school.
Mr. Issahaku Iddrisu, Head-teacher of the Jou Primary School said the school was established in 1989 with a pavilion structure until ActionAid and its local partner Songtaba, provided a 3 unit classroom facility, toilet and office for the staff.
He explained that, the community was provided with a JHS only on paper, but in reality there was no physical structure for the school. Due to the long distance pupils trek to access JHS education, parents who could afford send their children to stay in the Bimbilla township and school there.
He disclosed that, poverty sometimes compel parents who could not afford to rent accommodation for their wards in the Bimbila township to withdraw them from school.
Meanwhile, the District Director of Education for the Nanumba South District, Alice Aniwine Nawuri disclosed to this reporter that the district was in deficit of JHS. She indicated that, the GES had established new JHSs across the district but without infrastructure.
She asked community members to build sheds as temporal structures for the schools while the District Assembly mobilized funds to build permanent ones for them.
In spite of the fact that, the Nanumba North District had been ranked the best on two consecutive times for good performance at the Basic Education Certificate Examination (BECE) level, the GES Director was however not impressed with the standard of education in the area.