THE Welwitschia Junior Secondary School in Khorixas is in a dilapidated state, with concerning unhygienic conditions at specifically its ablution facilities and showers.
A parent that visited the school said the boys and girls at the school’s hostel are using the same toilet because broken toilets means only one is operational, which they cannot sit on and instead are forced to squat due to health concerns.
Apart from this, dirty water continues to accumulate in the showers due to blocked drainages and learners who supposedly don’t have mattresses are forced to sleep on concrete beds.
Although the hostel was reportedly built to house between 300 and 400 learners, its poor state means that only 145 learners currently stay there.
Executive Director of the Ministry of Education, Art and Culture, Sanet Steenkamp said the school, built in 1973, is one of the oldest in the country and needs a total renovation.
She noted that her ministry included the school in the Renovation Plan for 2020/2021.
“There are two other blocks that are in a functional ablution facility for both girls and boys on the school premises that are in a favourable hygienic state,” she said.
According to Steenkamp, the learner’s sleeping on concrete beds have mattresses.
She said beds were constructed this way to ease the problem of a lack of beds in the hostel.
“The idea was benchmarked against standards used by rest camp facilities,” she explained, adding “We acknowledged that more funding needs to be allocated towards the infrastructure that are in a dilapidating state and that there is a backlog with regards to the renovation of most education physical facilities countrywide.”
Regardless of the financial situation that they are faced with, Steenkamp said her Ministry continues to avail funding towards the upkeep of all education physical facilities and the development of new ones.