Kampala, Uganda | THE INDEPENDENT | The Ministry of Education and Sports has started a process to operationalize new 117 seed secondary schools that had been stalled over the last years.
Patrick Muinda, the Ministry of Education spokesperson notes that more than 41 Billion Shillings has been allocated in the current financial year budget to cater for costs for wages for staffing of the schools.
“The budget also covers ICT equipment, chemical reagents and science kits. The ministry is currently validating the seed schools to inform the recruitment exercise for staff,” a written response from Muinda reads in part.
Sam Kuloba, the commissioner of government secondary schools notes that all the newly constructed schools are to receive teachers by January 2020 in the time for the new school year. Kuloba has also issued out a circular calling local government to prepare the relevant documentation for the process.
“Permanent Secretary issued out a circular guiding the recruitment of teachers for the above schools. As per the circular, there is a need to generate information from the respective schools to inform the development recruitment guidelines,” says Kuloba.
Construction of the majority of the schools in question started in 2018 under the Uganda Inter-Government Fiscal Transfer Programme phase 1. However, the construction process was challenged by woes within local governments as authorities disagreed on areas where the schools could be built. In other areas, the contractors delayed reaching on-site. But Muinda notes that the majority of the schools are expected to be ready in December.
Major delays have been experienced in the districts that include Ntungamo, Mbarara, Gulu, Nwoya, Amuru and Omoro but officials at the ministry say they are closely following up the issue on a case by case basis to ensure that all sites are ready for handover by December.
The operationalization of the 117 secondary schools is in line with the government’s effort to extend secondary education to all Ugandans by having at least one school in each sub-county.
Statistics from the Education Ministry indicate that 615 sub-counties in Uganda have no government secondary schools. However, the government has approved two different loans from the World Bank which will see the construction of more schools to reduce the burden.