A random survey, conducted by Mwalimu last week, revealed an appalling state of hygiene in schools, especially those upcountry.
There should be collective responsibility between parents and schools. Head teachers whose schools are found lacking in hygiene should be penalised.
But, parents should not leave this responsibility to schools because good hygiene starts at home.
Parents should ensure that children stop sharing rooms with animals and birds.
A child should not go to school without bathing. Parents should teach children the etiquette of good hygiene.
Teachers also have a role to play. Children learn by seeing. So teachers should lead by example.
Teachers should come to class well dressed. If a teacher comes to class shabbily dressed, he or she portrays a bad picture to the pupils.
Therefore, school heads should reign in teachers whose hygiene is wanting.
In addition, the policy of early morning parades in schools should be stepped up. One of the reasons why schools in the past minimised diseases was because of the strict code of hygiene enforced at the time.
This was a time when many pupils could not afford shoes and bathing soap.
But, pupils improvised and strict hygiene was observed. This minimised cases of lice and jiggers.
However, recently jiggers were reported in Kamuli district, where some schools closed down.
Over 45 pupils from different schools were given treatment by dipping their feet in potassium permanganate solution, provided by Plan International.
The fact that head teachers presided over children with jiggers is not acceptable.
It is even worse that it had to take the intervention of Good Samaritans to address the issue.
Such negligence is failure on the part of the school heads.
It is also an indicator that such heads of schools are not taking keen interest in the hygiene of pupils. It is not acceptable that in modern times, schools should have pupils with lice or jiggers.
EDITOR'S NOTE: Hygiene is everyoneâ€™s responsibility