Hailstorm Damages Kasese School Ahead of New Term

Monday, September 18, 2023
A classroom block is seen on September 17, 2023 in the aftermath of a storm at Kabirizi Primary School in Kasese District.
Busiinge Aggrey
3 Min Read

Kasese District | THE BLACK EXAMINER | More than 100 students from a government-aided school in Kasese District are facing disruption due to a destructive hailstorm that inflicted damage on their educational facility just before the start of the third term, scheduled for September 18.

The hailstorm wreaked havoc by dislodging over 100 iron sheets from classrooms at Kabirizi Primary School, raising concerns about the school’s ability to fully reopen on Monday.

According to Wilson Baluku, the school’s head teacher, three classrooms suffered complete loss of their iron sheets, while another one was partially affected. He expressed the dire situation by saying, ‘Our school has an enrollment of 219 students. With 114 of them lacking classrooms, finding suitable accommodation poses a significant challenge. It’s impractical for primary seven pupils to share classrooms with primary one pupils. We are facing an exceedingly difficult situation.’

Baluku emphasized the urgency of addressing the issue, estimating that repairing the damaged classroom block would require at least Shs7.5 million. He added, ‘However, most of our parents in this area are seasonal laborers who come for planting, weeding, and harvesting seasons. It’s challenging for them to support us in repairing these blocks.’

The heavy rain also decimated banana plantations, which had been the primary source of food for the school staff for over two years. Baluku noted, ‘The school will now grapple with a food shortage, potentially leading to teachers going without lunch, which could affect their effectiveness and the overall teaching and learning process.’

Semu Bangahi, the chairperson of the school management committee, assured that every effort was being made to ensure the school’s reopening, while they sought solutions to the challenges stemming from the disaster. He emphasized, ‘The school must remain open. If it doesn’t, many of the students here could drop out, and that is a situation we cannot afford.’

George Mainja, the Kasese District Education Officer, recommended an emergency meeting involving all stakeholders to address the aftermath of the disaster. However, he disclosed that the district lacked an emergency fund to respond to such natural calamities in the current financial year. He added, ‘If no alternatives are found, we may have to consider closing the school, though that is not our intention.’

This incident follows a hailstorm in the same district just a week ago, which left eleven households in Kahendero I Cell of Kahendero Ward, Muhokya Town Council, homeless as it tore the roofs off their houses.


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