Omedo has since 2013 worked diligently to improve the status of the school, located in Nabumali town council, Mbale district.
MBALE - Although rioting students burnt the offices of Nabumali High School 15 years ago, destroying all records, Bernard Ogund Omedo, the new headteacher, is setting a new history for the school.
Omedo has since 2013 worked diligently to improve the status of the school, located in Nabumali town council, Mbale district. Stephen Namonyo, the chairperson, board of governors, says much as the strike led to a drastic drop in enrolment, from 3,000 to the present 800, Omedo is struggling to change the status quo at this mixed boarding school.
“The swimming pool project, new water supply shared with locals and new buildings are a step in the right direction. These interventions will boost our student numbers as well as grades,” Namonyo assures.
Swimming pool project
Omedo says his administration is working closely with the old students to revive co-curricular activities at the school.
“History has it that when the school’s swimming pool was opened in 1964, it was the only one of its kind in eastern Uganda. Now that it is being revamped, the heyday of Nabumali will be gradually restored,” Omedo says.
Collins Matovu Wasswa, the treasurer of the board of trustees and chairperson of the swimming pool committee, discloses that the old students plan to spend sh210m on the venture.
“The first phase of the project involved rebuilding the changing room block and clean-up. So far, the works done cost sh150m,” Wasswa says.
He adds that the second phase, which involves enclosing the swimming pool is underway.
“This pool was last used 41 years ago. Putting it back to use is a great gesture and a sign of the school’s revamp,” he says.
According to Wasswa, a physics teacher, Irvin, with the student’s help, did the land excavation.
Omedo cites other co-curricular contributions as a result of the opening up of the school sports field, which is often used for district competitions.
“In 2017, our music, dance and drama team competed favourably up to the national level in Mbarara district. We also represented Mbale at the national volleyball tournament in Arua last year,” he says.
Herbert Weboya, the deputy headteacher, says Omedo has ensur ed that the school acquires a gravity-flow water supply scheme.
“He was part of the team that convinced parents to fund the project to stop dependence on the National Water and Sewerage Corporation’s billed supply. The land was purchased on Wanale Hill and big tanks were placed there to release water to the school,” Weboya narrates.
He explains that the community living along the supply lines had started making illegal connections to steal the water.
“This led to losses through leakages. So we opened up designated secure tapping points for the community,” he reveals.
According to Weboya, the move has given locals a sense of ownership, consequently helping in guarding the water pipes.
Patrick Ayota, the deputy managing director of the National Social Security Fund and an old student, hails the 1995-2000 cohort for renovating the Senior One classroom block.
“We need such collective responsibility to rebuild our school. In the next fi ve years, it will be a better place for students,” Ayota says.
Eng. Darlington Sakwa, the Old Students’ Association patron, says the group parted with sh20m to renovate the classroom.
“The good relationship between the administration and old students made it possible to clean the 107-year-old tiles, give walls a fresh coat of paint and repair the ceiling,” Sakwa notes. Harriet Mwesigwa, the Mbale district education offi cer, lauds the headteacher for the efforts so far made to restore the glory of Nabumali High School.
“Omedo’s input is not just being felt by the school members, but the entire community. We need to give credit where it is due,” Mwesigwa emphasises.
3 Golden tips
1 Take one step at a time
2 Hard work pays
3 Teamwork is key to success
1986: Obtained Primary Leaving Examination (PLE) certificate from Busota Primary School in Pallisa district
1990: Got O’level certificate from St Peter’s College, Tororo.
1993: Attained an A’level certificate from St Peter’s College, Tororo.
1995: Got a diploma in secondary education from National Teachers’ College, Munni
1995-1997: Taught at St Peter’s College, Tororo
2001: Graduated from Kyambogo University with a degree in education
2001-2015: Taught at Gombe SS
2015-2018: Deputy headteacher, Nabumali High School
July 2018: Appointed headteacher of Nabumali High School
Mercy Katisi, student: Our headteacher is parental in his approach to leadership. He is taking our school to greater heights.
Geoffrey Nambafu, former president of the Nabumali Old Students Association: Old students have a cordial working relationship with Omedo. We are certain that he is making a fundamental change at the school.
Samantha Nandutu, student: I joined Nabumali because of the recent developments.