The Monrovia Consolidated School System or MCSS has disclosed plans to embark on a school feeding program in the coming academic year as a means of attracting more students and keeping them in school.
MCSS Superintendent, Benjamin Adolphus Jacobs, who made the disclosure Tuesday at the Ministry of Information, Cultural Affairs and Tourism’s daily press briefing, said the System will prioritize the school feeding program to help increase students attendance at school.
Mr. Jacobs who was sure between the two months, said schools might reopen in late January or February and close in late August or September. He also said there are plans to run classes from Monday to Saturday if approved by the Ministry of Education.
“The school-feeding program in the upcoming year,” he said, “will help boost the reflection of learning for the children at the various MCSS campuses as well as increase enrollment. No one can learn on an empty stomach, especially the little ones.
Many of them will come to school in the morning hungry and weak and cannot respond to their teachers, even at question time. Many of them will not ask questions and sometimes leave campus during recess and run home because of food”, Mr. Jacobs noted.
He pointed that many of the school-going children were appearing in the classroom without eating anything at home, which he said was causing serious problems in keeping them focused on learning.
The MCSS Superintendent further narrated that due to the fight against the deadly Ebola virus and the issue of breaking the transmission, his administration is hoping to run three shifts: morning, evening and night, as a mean of reducing over crowdedness in the classroom.
The MCSS boss, who has learnt so much from the deadly Ebola Virus that has killed thousands of Liberians, said all MCSS schools will have Thermometers to test students and teachers’ temperatures on campus.
“We are securing vehicles for the three regions, Central Monrovia, Sinkor and Bushrod Island to help in carrying any sick person, both teachers and students, for treatment. We will have one room reserved on each campus to have the person there before hospital attention is provided”, he added.
Superintendent Jacobs spoke of plans to conduct workshops for both teachers and students before the official opening of school, stressing that all Ebola preventive measures will be observed on campuses.
“We are training guidance counselors for most of our schools that will help to guide many of our students in their learning process. We are also hoping to construct hand-pumps on some of our campuses as a way of improving sanitation.”