By Bonney Odongo
In a bid to improve the teaching of Science subjects in the war affected Lango sub region, the Japanese government has constructed a modern science laboratory block at Alito Secondary School in Kole district.
The laboratory block worth US $121,898 about sh292.5m that include Physics, Biology and Chemistry laboratories was commissioned on Tuesday by the Japanese Deputy Head of Mission to Uganda, Yutaka Nakamura.
In his address, Yutaka said construction of the Laboratory Block including all the solar equipment was funded by Japan government under a project dubbed Grant Assistance for Grassroots Human Security.
He said the science laboratory project supported by the Japanese also catered for installation of solar panels for lighting, providing water to the laboratory block and purchase of laboratory stools.
Yutaka added that Japan became concerned after realizing that the 20 year conflict in the region left many school structures destroyed rendering it very difficult to teach science subjects in schools.
“This new laboratories will enable the students to have a hand-on experience and thus demystify the attitude that science subjects are difficult and I hope that through this, great scientists in many great profession will be born in this area,” he said.
The Alito Secondary School head teacher, Augustine Okello noted that the Laboratory Block comes few months after the government of Uganda with funding from World Bank put up another three classroom blocks at the school.
He said the school paid sh9.6m to co fund the project: adding Kole district local government had also earlier pledged to support the Science Laboratory project.
Chairman Board of Governors for Alito Secondary School, Richard Opio said the laboratory that was built by AS and TSI Engineering Services would boost the teaching of science subjects at the school.
“I want to appreciate AS and TSI Engineering Services for the good work done but to teachers my advice is, teach the children well, because parents are now expecting great improvement in performance of students,” Opio said.
He added that any poor performance or failure on the side of students would be letting the Japanese down.
Opened in 1984, Alito Secondary School had been experiencing the negative impact of the recurring insurgencies in the region.
It was turned into Internally Displaced People’s (IDPs) camp during the LRA conflict, only to be reopened in 2009 after the defeat of the insurgents by the UPDF.
Since then, the school has been lacking facility for science education and as a result, many of the students fail to finish the basic curriculum appropriately thus creating wide spread science education gap in the region.