SCHOOLS in the Karas Region have recorded a significant growth in enrolment figures for grade one pupils.
Revealing the news to The Namibian yesterday, Karas education director /Awebahe Johannes //Hoeseb ascribed the growth in enrolment figures to the abolition of the school development fund payments for pre-primary and primary pupils by the Education Ministry, and its decision to supply stationery free of charge to all primary schools.
Because of the growth in enrolment, //Hoeseb said some schools encountered placement problems for grade one pupils.
However, he was quick to say that the education authority was hard at work to solve the placement problems encountered at some schools.
"Principals are working around the clock to find placement for pupils who could not be accommodated," said //Hoeseb.
According to //Hoeseb, 38 first-graders could not be accommodated at a primary school at Lüderitz, while afternoon classes were introduced at the Hoeksteen Combined School at Rosh Pinah.
At the St Theresia Junior Secondary School at Tses, 28 Grade 9 pupils could not be accommodated because of a lack of classrooms.
//Hoeseb said another problem was the growing impatience of parents to be refunded for school development fund payments made before the announcement of free primary education.
//Hoeseb said it was suggested to parents that they be refunded in instalments, because if the money was paid back in one go some schools might face operational challenges as the money had already been budgeted for.
"Some parents indicated that they do not want to be refunded and that the money be donated to school hostels to cover operational costs," he said.