The non-conducive learning environment is the challenge
By: Puleng Mosili
While education is a fundamental human right for all children, accessing education is a struggle for vulnerable children in the remote areas of the country. With the winter season that lasts more and bone-chilling, a lot hardly make it to school because of lack of warm clothes and shoes to keep them warm and learn efficiently. A lot of their classrooms are dilapidated from roof to flooring. Some even have no proper doors or windows (or none at all) to stop the wind from coming in.
A lot choose to miss school and rather stay at home where they can warm themselves all day. As thus, such children miss a lot because the weather in most of the rural areas is hardly warm, resulting in poor performance of the schools in remote areas. The learning condition of the previously stated children is not at all conducive which means the learners hardly obtain any quality education if any at all. The non-conducive learning environment is not the only challenge faced by learners in remote areas but also lack of learning materials and exposure required by the new curriculum, teachers with lack of skills to carry out instruction in line with the curriculum, long distances from home to school is also a barrier that inhibits learners to access education together with cultural practices.
`The situation is twice as hard for children with disabilities. To improve the situation the government of Lesotho through the ministry of education implementing the Lesotho Education Quality for Equality and Lesotho basic education improvement projects with the help of funds from the World Bank is. The two projects that are of great importance to both the schools and the government seem to be so far helping with absenteeism of both learners and teachers and hopefully with this two issues dealt with though not fully, the schools will perform better. Almost all schools that LNFOD visited in the rural areas are to install the heating system to help learners study better in warm environment even those that can’t afford to have winter jackets. Some schools have even managed to buy a few learning and sports materials to compliment the new curriculum that seem to be giving teachers and learners tough time. Even though many children will be benefiting from the project, sadly children with disabilities aren’t gaining any benefit(s).
This was discovered in the schools visits conducted by in the five districts of Lesotho Quthing, Mohale’s Hoek, Mafeteng, Maseru, Berea and Leribe while monitoring the progress of the two projects and inclusiveness.
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