The unutilized school capitation grant that the education and sports ministry directed schools to use for renovation works is severely inadequate, some of the headteachers have revealed.
Due to the prolonged closure of learning institutions triggered by the COVID-19 pandemic, schools didn’t utilize the Shillings 107billion disbursed by the government under the capitation grant.
As a result, the education ministry through Chief Accounting Officers directed schools to utilize at least Shillings 62 billion for renovation ahead of the reopening on January 10th, 2022.
Juliet Namuddu, the Director of Education and Social Services under Kampala Capital City Authority-KCCA told URN that they are still assessing the status of schools before deciding on the way forward.
Despite this, she noted that the money allocated for the renovation works is insufficient, which means the schools can only use it for simple tasks like slashing the compound, painting and repairing broken desks and chairs.
Namuddu explains that although there are some schools that are in dire condition and could need mega renovations, the available funds are not enough.
Francis Katabira, the headteacher of KCCA primary school Kamwokya, says that they received Shillings 2.6 million to cater for the renovation. “We have embarked on identifying the areas that will need to be revamped for the safe learning of the children,” he said.
Florence Mabaale, the headteacher of Kasubi family primary school, says the capitation grant cannot be enough to work on all the needs of the school. She said that they are trying to improvise to ensure that the learners get a conducive environment.
She says emptying the toilet is one of the major challenges as children always dump plastic waste in the pits.
With almost less than a month left to the reopening of schools on January 10, 2022, some schools are not yet aware of the availability of funds for the renovations.
Zaidi Kulumba, the headteacher of Kawempe Muslim primary school says that the school has pending renovation works that include roofing and the repair of furniture.
He however says that as the school head, he is ignorant about the availability of the capitation grant for the renovation works.
Rogers Nambuli, the headteacher of Nakasero primary school says that the information he has is that the funds are only meant for the schools in dire condition. He says that even as a school, they have not seen the funds.
Dr. Chrysostom Muyingo, the Higher Education State Minister has directed Chief Administrative Officers to avail information about the capitation grant to the headteachers, saying that this is a process that was supposed to be carried out immediately.
According to Muyingo, the Ministry of Education engaged all accounting officers and briefed them about the matter, saying that they should be held accountable for failing to share the information with school heads URN