Government plans to construct 250 seed schools in sub-counties

Education and Sports Minister, Ms Janet Museveni, said the government plans to build 259 secondary starter schools as part of its effort to ensure that every sub-county in the country has a starter school.

In her address delivered by the Minister of State for Fisheries, Mrs Hellen Adoa, on Friday at the commissioning of the 1.9 billion shillings Kagwara Seed Secondary School in Serere District , Ms Museveni said the government would implement this through intergovernmental fiscal transfers. (UgIFT), financed by the World Bank.
She said the construction of schools under the UgIFT program is taking place in three phases.
A total of 117 schools will be built in the first phase, 115 schools in the second and 27 in the third.

“The government is committed to implementing its policy to ensure that there is one secondary school in every sub-county to provide quality education services in the country,” Ms. Museveni said.
The UgIFT was launched in the 2018/2019 fiscal year to, among other things, increase capitation grants to schools and provide resources under the salary budget to recruit staff in understaffed districts.
Ms Museveni said the government has also taken measures such as revising policies to promote diversity, skills and providing comprehensive education to improve the competitiveness of children to face the global environment. .

Ms. Museveni added that the ministry will undertake a mapping exercise to establish the gap in administrative units, which have no public school per sub-country.
Mr. Elijah Okupa, the Kasilo County MP, who attended the launch, urged school management and the district to ensure that students are not overburdened, saying that start-up schools are supposed to give a breath of life to children from modest backgrounds.
In a related development, the government this weekend launched a start-up secondary school in Alwi sub-county in Pakwach district.

The community opened the school in 2012 to absorb primary school students and help parents who cannot afford to send their children to distance learning institutions.
Mrs. Christine Acayo, district education officer, said students in the sub-county were traveling more than 10 kilometers to access the nearby secondary school, which would affect their performance and cause delays.
“Students used to walk more than 10 kilometers to reach Pakwach Secondary School, which was the closest. The next is Nyaravur in Nebbi district,” Ms Acayo said.
She said many secondary schools in the district were built by the community and lack full science and ICT labs.
LC3 President, Mr. Robert Odiya urged parents to send their children to school.

“We will be happy to see the increase in registrations. We don’t want to see school children in shopping malls, snack bars or bets. We will launch operations against such people,” he said.
Jonam County MP Mr. Emmanuel Ongiertho said about 1,000 sub-counties in the country lack seed schools with West Nile sub-region being the most affected.
“We still have 639 old sub-counties, if we bring in the current ones as well, we will have over 1,000 sub-counties in the country that do not have start-up schools. The government needs to build more to close the gap,” he said.

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