Charles Ssengendo of Nakasero Primary School said his school had a population of about 2,340 pupils with less than 30 teachers.
PIC: The chairman PTA Nakasero Primary School Sunday Kasenene (left) explains to state minister for Kampala Benna Namugwanya as Joel Bakaawa Sekabembe, the chairman school management committee (centre) looks on at Nakasero Primary School on Friday March 16, 2018. (Credit: Juliet Waiswa)
KAMPALA - Headteachers of primary schools under Kampala Capital City Authority (KCCA) have blamed their poor performance on the overwhelming number of pupils and few teachers in their schools.
Some schools heads said teachers were transformed and no replacement was made, while others said the teacher-pupil ratio had also gone up, adding that there was less attention to the pupils.
The headteachers during a meeting with the state minister for Kampala, Benna Namugwanya, at Nakasero Primary School, explained a number of challenges they faced, which include lack of motivation, accommodation, land grabbing and poor salaries, among others.
"The teacher-pupil ratio stands at 1:100, yet the population of the schools keeps on increasing, this issue should be addressed," Jane Kansiime, headteacher KCCA Primary School in Kamwokya said.
Kansiime said her school had a population of 1,000 pupils, yet she had 23 teachers.
Her outcry was no longer as alarming when Charles Ssengendo of Nakasero Primary School said his school had a population of about 2,340 pupils with less than 30 teachers.
The recently released Primary Leaving Examinations results showed that Kampala schools had performed poorly, prompting the Parliament and councillors to demand that KCCA explains the cause of the poor performance.
Ssengendo also complained that the government aided schools were blocked from having weekend and holiday classes, yet their colleagues in the private schools teach, urguing that this could be another reason as to why they were performing poorly compared to private schools.
The management committee members suggested a number of issues to address in order to improve the performance in the KCCA schools.
Dixson Kamukama, a member of the KCCA Kamwokya P/S, advised that Kampala teachers be motivated, adding that KCCA should consider putting teachers in KCCA schools under their salary structure.
On the other hand, the chairman of Nakasero Primary School, Parents Teachers Association, Sunday Kasenene, told Namugwamya that the PTA policy should be revised to involve parents and teachers as it was before.
Kasenene also said teachers needed refresher courses and advised KCCA to develop a revolving fund for the teachers.
On KCCA's part, the director of education, Juliet Nammudu, said KCCA had a shortfall of about 117 teachers, confirming that they would soon be recruited by the education services commission.
On the teacher-pupils ratio, Nammudu said the government policy was that a classroom had a 1:53 ration for better performance.
Nammudu also revealed that KCCA had set up a teacher's SACCOS, which would allow teachers to get loans and engage in income-generating activities.
Namugwanya assured the headteachers that her ministry was in the process of acquiring school land titles in order to protect the affected city schools.
The meeting was attended by 13 headteachers from central division, members from the school management committees, parents, KCCA officials, central division mayor, Charles Sserunjogi and educationists among others.