Mbale’s North Road school in sorry state

One of the classroom blocks at North Road Primary School in Mbale City which was renovated recently. PHOTO/YAHUDDU KITUNZI 

What you need to know:

  • The school administration says many of the classrooms are crumbling.

The management of North Road Primary School in Mbale City has raised concern over the poor state of the institution which has been in existence for 90 years.

In an interview with Monitor on Wednesday last week, the head teacher, Mr Micheal Wangwe, said the pupils have been studying in dilapidated classrooms with leaking roofs and broken window panes.

He added that facilities such as desks and staff houses are not enough for the large population of the institution. The school has 3,288 pupils and 73 teachers.

“We have a challenge of lack of teacher’s accommodations, insecurity, and shortage of teachers,” Mr Wangwe said.

He added: “We want to construct more structures for both teachers and pupils and turn this school into a boarding section to improve academic performance.”

Mr Richard Wopata, the chairman of the Parents Teachers Association (PTA) , said many of the classroom blocks have developed cracks. 

“We have made reports to the school old students association, Mbale City education officers and the Ministry of Education about the sorry state of the school but no response yet,” he said.

This publication has also learnt that in 2018, former pupils of the school launched the “Paint North Road Primary School” campaign to rehabilitate the school but it did not yield any fruit.

Mr Moses Nanoka, an old boy, called on the government to come to the aid of the school. 

“The school faces encroachment by land grabbers and also uncollected garbage by the city council, among others,” Mr Nanoka said.

However, the Emirates Dubai Sevens Association, renovated part of the school.

The association is made up of United Arab Emirates nationals living in Mbale.
Mr Michael Lowery, an Emirates Dubai Sevens Association member, said the renovation was part of their social responsibility.

Mr Wangwe said he was grateful for the assistance from the organisation.
 “We are happy that the school has been partially renovated but more needs to be done by the government,” he said.

Mr Timothy Bisagati Wolimbwa, the president of the North Road Primary School Old Students Association, said they are also planning to carry out several activities to help with the rehabilitation of the school including fundraising for water extension because it is one of the challenges the school faces.”

He said pupils, especially girls, are dropping out of school due to the lack of water.

About the school

North Road Primary School was established in 1932 by the Indian business community in Uganda. The government took it over in 1960. It is now under the Universal Primary Education (UPE) programme.