NEW CLASSROOMS, NEW HOPE
By: Nqobile Tembe
Groutville High School in Stanger, North of Durban, is one of the few schools fortunate enough to have been built new classrooms by the KwaZulu- Natal Department of Education.
Last year, the department initiated a project to build new classrooms for schools situated in disadvantaged communities. Fortunately for Groutville High it did not take long to have their classrooms built.
For years, the school has been struggling with the high number of learners and inadequate space to accommodate all of them.
This has led to over-crowded classes, making it difficult for educators to interact with learners.
Teacher Wiseman Ndlovu complained about the issue of discipline when teaching under these circumstances.
“Teaching over-crowded classes is very difficult for us as teachers because we are not able to manage our learners. It makes it difficult to consult with under-performing learners ,” Ndlovu said.
Principal Nhlanhla Mbhele stated that each year the number of learner enrollment increases by at least 10% and they can not cope because they have limited classrooms.
“There was a need for an increase of classrooms, because of the number of learners that are enrolled in the school. When I started working in 2006, the number of learners was 860 and now they are 1875,” he said.
Mbhele added that the situation had an impact on the quality of education produced by teachers.
Cases like the one of Groutville High School are not new, especially in remote areas like Stanger.
Deputy President of the Learner’s Representative Council, Amanda Mdluli, expressed her joy for the additional class-rooms the school is receiving.
“As Groutville High School learners, we are very happy to know that next year we will be going to our new classes. If you go to classes you will find more than 65 learners in one class, but now that we are going to have new classes the situation will most definitely change,” she said.
The contractors have assured the school management that the builders will be done by January next year.