May 14, 2015 News
Three days after elections, school attendance across Guyana continues to be very poor. Parents opted for the safety of their children while the Guyana Elections Commission attempts to complete the 2015 elections.
They kept their children home from school.
For the past three days the city looked depressed; businesses kept their doors closed, and most people seemed tense as they awaited the final results from the elections. Almost everywhere there were whispers and even outbursts about what many opined to be procrastination over the results.
There was the rain which did its part in keeping the streets cleared of people and lonely as it kept falling throughout yesterday.
A visit to a few schools around the city revealed the same conditions. According to reports Charlestown Secondary which has more than 500 students, only saw a turnout of about 40 students on Tuesday. According to a teacher, it was very quiet at school. There was a good turnout of teachers who worked with the children who were all housed in one class for the day.
At Central High, a teacher said that the turnout was reasonable. There were some 100 students in attendance of the more than 500 students on a normal day. Bishops High School was just about the same but with a 50 per cent staff turnout.
At North Georgetown Primary School on Woolford Avenue, yesterday, many of the classrooms were empty but teachers turned out as usual. The head-teacher of that school said that unlike the other schools which opted to dismiss classes half day, school will be held all day.
Children from St. Joseph High school were also seen along the Woolford Avenue. They said that they had the option of going home at lunch because they had nothing to do at school.
A stop at one of the Nation’s leading secondary schools, Queen’s College, revealed that there was also a poor turnout and students were sent home half-day yesterday. “Was like a mourning or something,” said the caretaker of the school.
The poor attendance was not limited to only public schools. There were also reports of similar occurrences at private schools. Attendance at School of the Nations, a private institution was very poor as most of the students in attendance yesterday were students who had to write IGCSE, a Cambridge examination.
Just after 15:00hrs spotting school children was very rare across the capital city. The various bus parks were empty.
Over at Berbice, the attendance was also relatively poor, as villages across the Ancient County were tense.
In the mining town of Linden at the Mackenzie High School there was a scarce population. Students were sent home half day. At the Linden Foundation there were many vacant seats in classrooms, which forced teachers to send home students as teachers were leaving.
Even in far off Bartica and Itaballi children hardly went to school as fear and tension spread across the nation with the pending elections results.
Despite these reports, the Public Relations Officer (PRO) of the Ministry of Education, Suelle Williams, said that there have been no reports of these occurrences. She urged parents to send their children to school which continues as normal.
Some parents who refused to send their children to school yesterday maintained that they will not be sending their children to school with the growing tension which precedes the announcement of the elections results.
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