Monrovia - Students of the June L. Moore Junior High School in Gbengbar Town in Paynesville are sitting on the floor to learn because of lack of chairs and enough space in the jammed classrooms.
Our reporter who visited the school the campus recent saw students sitting on broken blocks and old planks, while some sat directly on the floor.
Students struggled to write as they had to bend over nearly 180 degrees, using their legs as desk.
“We need a supply of armchairs in large quantities in order to avoid us from siting on blocks, old planks and on the floor as we are doing currently,” said student leader Roland Nah.
“It is difficult for us to write and learn better under such atmosphere. "
"To verify this information, please send your plainclothes security to come and see what we are experiencing.”
Making the remarks during the opening ceremony of the reading room on the school campus, student Nah also appealed to the Ministry of Education to come to their aid in providing security for the school to keep the books and computers intact.
“The condition of this school continues to break my heart,” Brenda B. Moore, Founder of the Kids Educational Engagement Program, who spoke recently when dedicating a reading room at the school."
"The children are sitting on the floor because there are no enough chairs."
"Some children even stand at the doorway to write because of lack of space."
Moore wondered what the children were learning in the kind of condition they are learning.
“No wonder why we have mass failure of students in the national exams."
"I hope the Ministry of Education is seeing the situation to step in and resolve the problem because it is very pathetic to see a government run school in Montserrado and not in rural Liberia at that, to have children sitting on the floor in this modern day,” Moore said.
June L. Moore School is just a few miles away from the Ministry of Education.
The Ministry is now working with a number of nonprofit organizations, including Bridge, Omega and BRAC, to improve the standards of learning in the country.
“The Ministry is responsible to bring chairs, but it will take time because everything is budgeted for."
"It is not a good thing for the kids to be sitting on the floor, so we will do what we can to bring chairs here,” Minister of Education Minister George warner said at the dedication of the reading room.
“First of all the government needs to build another school because the class rooms are pack and there is no space."
"I will advocate for another school building to be erected,” Warner concluded.
Like June L. Moore, many schools in rural Liberia and Montserrado are also facing inadequate seating capacity, where students sit on the floor.
In River Cess County a few years ago, New Narratives and FPA conducted an investigation in a three-part story, highlighting issues of lack of chairs, unqualified teachers and lack of instructional materials.
The County Educational Officer, (CEO) at the time, Moneh Duoe, demanded 10 percent of the school’s registration fees for the transfer of armchairs from a local carpenter shop. That did not happen, so the students sat on the floor.
“Since I took office, I have not received one cent from Cestor High, so the children will continue sitting on the floor until the money is provided because I cannot use my own money, “she said at the time.
While Education Ministry Deputy Minister for Administration, Minister Mator Kpangba, said budgetary allotment was responsible for some problems in many schools.