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Shama: Pupils learn in “palm fronts-classrooms” at Epowano

Despite government’s effort at bridging educational infrastructure gab in the country, there exist a number of highly deprived communities, mostly in rural Ghana. A classic example is the Epowano village in the Shama District of the Western Region. The school which was commissioned by the community provides for the education of their children from the Kindergarten to Primary Five level.

Only two decent classroom unit block has been constructed by the community to serve the Kindergarten with the remaining classes schooled under structures made of “palm-fronts”.

Acting Head of School, Emmanuel Baidoo in an interview with Skyy News lamented that the school has to close down in times of bad weather to safeguard the children. He emphasized that lessons are often disrupted in such circumstances, and that also affects pupils’ attendance to the school.

“It’s not conducive for teaching and learning.  When it rains school closes. When the sun is scorching school closes. Its very bad”, he noted.

The school currently has a population of about two hundred pupils.

Mr Baidoo continued that the ratio of teachers to the pupil is discouraging. He remarked that only four teachers, currently handle the whole of the Kindergarten to primary Five level.

“Currently we have four teachers taking care of these pupils.  We really need teachers. We also have issues with accommodation. Currently we have a three bedroom apartment, which we’ve converted one into a staff common room”, Mr Baidoo added.

Having acknowledged the concerns of the school, Member of Parliament for Shama, Ato Panford assured the community of his support to improve infrastructure for the school.

He intimated that his office and that of the district assembly will mobilise funds to put up a decent six unit classroom block by end of the year.

“Immediately we are going to provide them with a six unit classroom block to support the school. And also we are going to look at water and other needs for the children”, he said.

He added that some discussions have been taken with GNPC as an additional support avenue for the development of schools in the area.

“I’ve already had some engagement with GNPC foundation. That is another avenue.  Worst case of all, i will try and use my common fund to ensure that we give them a school”, Hon Panford stressed.


Story: Abraham Mensah/Skyy News

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