Trinidad Express / It is with great disgust and pain in my heart that I have come seeking your assistance in exposing the plight of our children and grandchildren at the Flanagin Town RC school. I have waited for too long after so many promises were made, so I decided that enough is enough. The whole nation needs to know about the conditions our children/grandchildren face on a daily basis.
Where do I begin? The Flanagin Town RC school is still housed in the same church building where it started 85 years ago, and the building is the same as it was back then. The difference today is that the walls are cracking, the ceiling is falling and infested with termites and the old rusty hinges that hold up the doors are giving way with age. This building was constructed with river-stone and the walls are about 18 inches thick. Bear in mind that such a structure was not built for children to occupy for a whole day as the heat emanating from these walls could be unbearable, especially on a hot day.
Construction of a new school had begun under the last government with a completion date given as May 2015. We are in 2016 and so far, only part of a foundation can be seen. When our MP, Dr Suruj Rambachan, recently questioned this in Parliament he was told by the Minister of Education that the school is not a priority at this stage! When will it be a priority? Shouldn’t the education of our children be a priority?
In this day and age when the Minister of Education brags on the television about providing quality education for all children, I really want him to know that I feel we are forgotten. Is it because we in the “bush”?
Why must our children suffer for proper classrooms with some even having to study in the corridor?
Why must they be forced to sit on termite-eaten benches that sometimes cut into their skin, when children in other schools have proper furniture?
Why must the teachers have to use blackboards that have been patched and propped over and over again till they have become unstable and pose a safety risk?
Why can’t our children have a clean, safe supply of drinking water instead of water contaminated with moss flowing from the taps?
(The fencing wall for the new building prevents the tanks from being cleaned properly).
Why should our children have to endure disruption of classes for funerals and church activities?
Furthermore, many of our children and teachers have become ill with the Zika virus due to the many pools of water which collect in the incomplete foundation for the new school. My children would often complain that the teachers’ charts and learning corners are often destroyed by the removal of the blinds/blackboards that separate the classes every Friday in order to prepare the church for weekend Mass.
Can someone in authority please answer? How long again must our children suffer? Why can’t they resume construction of the school? Why?
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