A school principal in Kakata, Margibi County has described the Government of Liberia as being insensitive to her responsibility.
Anthony Mulbah Jallah, Principal of the Kakata Community College or KCC made the statement recently when he spoke to our Margibi correspondent.
He said government ought to know that the provision of education to every Liberian child is one of its responsibilities .
Principal Jallah maintained the Ministry of Education and the rest of the government have failed to assist private schools, adding, the ministry has been unable to live up to one of its cardinal duties, which is support to the education sector without discrimination.
The KCC principal said he’s aware the ministry has its own shortcomings, because even with appeal from the international community and support from national government, private schools are yet to benefit from the national budget, particularly teachers in private schools, adding, “it is only quit recently that the Liberian government through the Ministry of Education said they have almost concluded arrangement for incentives to be provided to private and community schools, which is yet to happen.”
He said while they wait to see this happen, there are other challenges, disclosing that there are huge supply of books made available to the government by its international partners, which are yet to be distributed across the country.
Principal Jallah said with these shortcomings, it would become very difficult for students to learn effectively. He said during his school days, textbooks were no problems because they were provided free of charge, leaving students with the responsibility to maintain those books but nowadays, the provision of textbooks is almost a dream.
According to him, the Ministry of Education is responsible to providing education to all Liberian children irrespective of where they come from or the parents they are attached to, stressing, education should be provided and made available to all Liberians without boundaries, something, which he said, has not been forthcoming.
He said the Kakata Community College is being run from meager resources generated by the school board, national and international partners and fees collected from students.
Commenting on recent pronouncement by the Ministry of Education to close schools on July 31,and officially resume normal academic activities in September, Jallah described the pronouncement as mere joke, adding, the government cannot be serious to come up with such decision because it is not a single-handed or unilateral decision that can be taken without import of parents, who have spent their hard earned money for this academic year especially in private, community and faith-based institutions.
He said if such decision needs consultation amongst stakeholders, including Legislators, National Parent Teacher Association, among others.
“The government cannot be serious to come up with such proposition; the government can never be serious because this is not a single-handed decision or unilateral decision that can be taken by the Ministry of Education without the import of the parents, who have spent their hard earned monies for this academic year; that decision cannot be taken unilateral without the import of those schools especially, the private, community and faith-based schools that have spent so much time in providing education to Liberian children; if you want to reach such decision, a consultative meeting must be held amongst stakeholders such as the National Legislature, National Parent Teacher Association, among others.”
Jallah added, “Government forced schools to reopen; the schools did not force the government to pronounce reopening; lot of schools were not prepared to open but government forced and threatened to have fine schools that were not going to open; now the schools have opened; they have invested so much money; are you going to pay back their investment that they have done for the effective functioning of this academic year?” By Ramsey N. Singbeh, Jr. in Margibi – Editing by Jonathan Browne