Expand our school, Dordabis parents plead

04 March 2021 | Education

Parents at Dordabis are calling for the expansion of the local school to beyond grade 7 level to make education more accessible for children at the settlement.
Dordabis Community Development Committee member Patrick Jaarsab said the lack of a secondary school forces many children to drop out of school after completing grade 7 as they cannot afford to enrol in secondary schools elsewhere.
Jaarsab said the only school at the settlement, Dordabis Primary School, only goes up to Grade 7 and thereafter learners have to do their secondary education in places like Windhoek and Rehoboth. However, only those whose families can afford to pay for transport and hostel fees, and in some cases rent, can do so. Those who cannot afford are forced to drop out of school. He thus called upon Government to upgrade the school and add grades up to grade 10 level.
“Most people here are not employed and those who are employed work on farms for salaries that cannot cover payments for hostels in towns like Windhoek. It will be very helpful if the ministry can add more grades for our kids to complete school here,” said Jaarsab.

‘No feedback’
He added that education inspectors from the Khomas Region visited the settlement in 2019 to assess the situation and promised to provide feedback, but never did.
Approached for comment, Dordabis Primary School principal Ikuaterua Katjito said the school currently has 150 learners, with 26 learners in grade 7.
He echoed Jaarsab’s sentiments, but added that although he also wishes for more grades to be added, the school itself cannot be expanded because of a lack of available land in the area. He said as is, the current school grounds are already too small and congested.
Executive director in the Ministry of Education, Arts and Culture, Sanet Steenkamp said the ministry is in possession of the reports of schools that require upgrades, but this will be determined by the availability of funds. “Remember if you upgrade a school, you will be required to recruit additional staff members as well,” said Steenkamp. – Nampa