Sep 03, 2012 News Comments Off on Parents, education officials clash at Roxanne Burnham Nursery
– Parents upset over head teacher’s removal, merger with East Ruimveldt Nursery
Parents of pupils attending the Roxanne Burnham Nursery clashed with Education officials Saturday over a planned merger between the East Ruimveldt and Roxanne Burnham Nursery Schools.
Chief Education Officer (CEO), Olato Sam, in a statement issued Friday stated that due to various unforeseen circumstances, the re-opening of some schools will be delayed. One of the schools listed was Roxanne Burnham Nursery School. In addition, he noted pupils of East Ruimveldt will be placed in the Roxanne Burnham Nursery. This move, according to the CEO, comes as part of a decision to merge the schools to allow for more efficiency in the delivery of lessons.
This news prompted a protest by parents, who, along with Education officials and police, converged at the Roxanne Burnham Nursery Saturday.
Collectively, parents related that the nursery was built for approximately 50 students. However, at present the school houses 20 students, and the Education Ministry is seeking to add 70 pupils from the East Ruimveldt Nursery which would bring the total to 90 pupils.
The parents also claimed that the Education Ministry has issues with the outspoken headmistress of Roxanne Burnham Nursery.
“This nursery school was built in the late sixties, it was under the present head mistress’ bottom house, and we the residents fought for this piece of land with aid from SIMAP and it was built here. The Government never really helped us. When the grass is high we have to weed it. The government or the Mayor and City Council does not help residents in the area,” parents related.
Chief Education Officer Olato Sam, who visited the school to meet with parents, disclosed that the headmistress has now been re-assigned to a department within the Ministry of Education.
He said that this was an administrative decision that cannot be revoked, since it was made with the interest of the children of the school in mind.
“The Ministry of Education has a thick file with issues and complaints pertaining to this head mistress, and a new head will be assigned to the school,” Sam noted.
According to the parents, what is more frustrating is that the Ministry did not properly consult them on the matter.
“The Ministry did not consult with parents, they just come and they playing boss and doing whatever they feel like…and we seeing this thing as a political something,” parents lamented.
Underscoring that he personally called and tried contacting the headmistress on several occasions, Sam blamed the headmistress for the parents being unaware of the changes.
“On one occasion when a meeting was held at the school to have consultation only one parent was present”, Sam said.
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