Ms Janet Museveni, the Minister of Education and Sports, has stated that the government intends to build 259 seed secondary schools as part of its efforts to ensure that every sub-county in the country has a seed school.
Ms Museveni said the government will implement this through the Inter-Governmental, Fiscal Transfers (UgIFT) program, which is funded by the World Bank, in her address delivered by State Minister for Fisheries, Ms Hellen Adoa, on Friday during the commissioning of the Shs1.9 billion Kagwara Seed Secondary School in Serere District.
She explained that the development of the schools under the UgIFT program is done in three stages.
In the first phase, 117 schools will be erected, followed by 115 in the second and 27 in the third.
Ms Museveni stated, “The government is dedicated to pursuing its policy of ensuring that there is a secondary school in every sub-county to deliver quality education services in the country.”
The UgIFT was established in the 2018/2019 fiscal year to increase capitation grants to schools and offer resources from the wage budget to hire staff in understaffed districts, among other things.
Ms Museveni added that the government had also made steps to improve children’s competitiveness in the global context, such as changing policies to promote diversity, skills, and the provision of a comprehensive education.
Ms Museveni further stated that the ministry will conduct a mapping effort to determine the administrative areas that lack a government school per sub-country.
Mr Elijah Okupa, the Kasilo County MP, who attended the event, urged school administration and the district to ensure that pupils are not overcharged, stating that seed schools are intended to give children from low-income families a new start on life.
In a similar event, the government opened a seed secondary school in Pakwach District’s Alwi Sub-county over the weekend.
Students in the sub-county used to walk more than 10 kilometers to get to a nearby secondary school, according to Ms Christine Acayo, the district education officer, which affected their performance and caused lateness.
“To get to Pakwach Secondary School, which was the closest, students had to walk more than 10 kilometers.” “Nyaravur in Nebbi District is the next one,” Ms Acayo stated.
She claims that many of the district’s secondary schools were built by the community and lack complete science and ICT laboratories.
Mr. Robert Odiya, the chairman of the LC3, advised parents to send their children to school.
“We are pleased to see the growth in enrolment. We don’t want to see school-aged youngsters at shopping malls, bars, or betting establishments. “Operations against such will be launched,” he stated.
Mr. Emmanuel Ongiertho, a Jonam County MP, claimed there are around 1,000 sub-counties in the country without seed schools, with the West Nile Sub-region being the worst impacted.
“We still have 639 old sub-counties, and if we add the new ones, we’ll have over 1,000 sub-counties without seed schools throughout the country.” To close the deficit, the government needs to develop more, he said.